During construction of Multnomah County's new Central Courthouse, the public could walk along a 200-foot-long mural created by local students and artist Ralph Pugay. The mural tells a story of American justice as seen through the eyes of Portland's diverse high school students.
The mural was along a covered walkway that protected the public walking or biking across the Hawthorne Bridge during courthouse construction. The mural depicted a jury box filled with people who represent the American legal concept of “a jury of your peers.” The mural was designed by students at Martin Luther King Jr. School in collaboration with the King School Museum for Contemporary Art and local artist Ralph Pugay. Students were asked to draw figures representing who they would want to be judged by on a jury.
The students drew inspiration for the project through public safety leaders like Multnomah County Circuit Court Judge Nan Waller. They also toured the existing courthouse and visited the new courthouse under construction nearby. After receiving drawings from the students, artist Ralph Pugay helped bring the images to life on the mural. The project was made possible with Percent for Art funding from the Courthouse construction budget, the Regional Arts & Culture Council (RACC), which helped oversee the project, and Hoffman Construction, which installed the mural and of course, Mrs. Kiera Asay’s Leadership Class at King School.