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Philadelphia based muralist, Eric Okdeh, began creating public art in 1998.  After receiving his BFA in painting from Tyler School of Art, Eric chose to focus on socially engaged public art exclusively.  

As part of his process, Eric has facilitated art and mural making workshops with teens and adults, and classes with men incarcerated at SCI Graterford Prison, and people in inpatient and outpatient recovery programs. These classes serve as a vehicle for skill building, leadership and teamwork excercises, which culminate with major mural projects. Eric has found that the most successful murals provide a sense of inclusion and accomplishment among its participants which then empowers them to take ownership in the work. 

Community driven Public Art has the ability to provide a voice to those who feel disenfranchised and powerless.  Eric has created multimedia projects tackling difficult subject matter, such as gambling, addiction, mass incarceration and overcoming the stigma of mental illness. Going into communities to conduct interviews, and using art as a means to gather personal narratives, he is able to bring their stories to life and create a dialogue that is cathartic, and promotes empathy and understanding. The use of technology and social media platforms allow the larger conversation to continue beyond the completion of the physical work.  

  

 

 Eric has over 100 public art commissions throughout the Northeast United States as well as murals in Wailuku Hawaii, Seville Spain, Amman Jordan and Sandefjord Norway. 

He is proud to have created public art for the past 20 years with Mural Arts Philadelphia, and multiple Percent for Art programs and Public Art Organizations throughout the United States and the world.  His work is featured in seven books about Public and Mural Art.   

 


CV

ERIC OKDEH
www.ericokdeh.com
okdehmurals@gmail.com

 

EDUCATION
BFA, Tyler School of Art, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA                                                   Cum Laude Philadelphia High School for Creative & Performing Arts Honors in Painting

 EXHIBITIONS
Beyond the Wall              Art & Justice Symposium Convention Center Philadelphia, PA
                                       Criminal Justice Symposium Columbia University NYC, NY
Philadelphia City Hall Visitor’s Entrance                                             
Eastern State Penitentiary, Philadelphia
Connelly Collaboratory, Nesbitt Hall Drexel University, PA
Philadelphia Art Alliance
Prison Obscura              Haverford College, PA                                                                              
Beyond the Paint            Philadelphia’s Mural Arts PA Academy of Fine Arts, Philadelphia             
Family Interrupted         Community Voices Gallery, Philadelphia History Museum @ Atwater Kent
Styles May Vary              Urban Outfitters HQ Navy Yard, Philadelphia                                                                       Anthropologie Gallery Rockefeller Center, New York City
Albert M. Greenfield Restorative Justice Exhibition     The Thomas Eakins House, Philadelphia                   
Self Portraits (Group Exhibition)  Plastic Club, Philadelphia                                  
Works on Paper               Nexus Gallery, Philadelphia
Solipsist                            BFA Exhibition Tyler School of Art Elkins Park, PA
Senior Studio Exhibition   2001 Market Street Corporate Building, Philadelphia                             

PUBLICATIONS
Golden, Jane & Updike, D. (2014). Mural Arts @30. Philadelphia, PA: Temple University Press.

O’Connell, Maureen. (2012). If These Walls Could Talk: Community Muralism and the Beauty of Justice. Collegeville, MN: Liturgical Press.

Iosifidis, Kirlakos.  (2009) Mural Art #2: Murals on Huge Public Surfaces Around the World from Graffiti Trompe L’Oeil. (Publikat Verlags Und Handels Kg).

Zinman, Phoebe.  (2009). Visual Restoration. Pennsylvania: Roland Printing.

Moller, Maria. (2007). My North Philly: Neighborhoods. Murals. Stories. Philadelphia, PA: The City of Philadelphia Mural Arts Program.

Golden, Jane, Rice, R., & Pompilio, N. (2002) More Philadelphia Murals and the Stories They Tell. Philadelphia, PA: Temple University Press.

 TEACHING EXPERIENCE
       Multimedia Art Instructor- The Kirkbride Center                            
2015-Present

·       Conduct weekly art and mural making workshops with 20+ individuals in drug and alcohol rehabilitation. Over the years the classroom has reached 250+ people.

·       Develop on-going curriculum promoting positive self-imaging and accomplishment of complex personal works though traditional muralist methods.

Instructor, Lead Muralist – Philadelphia Mural Arts Program
Porchlight Program                                                                         
2015-Present

·       Conducted weekly art and mural making workshops with 20+ individuals in various in and out patient drug and rehabilitation facilities and shelters.

·       Interact with over 100 participants throughout 10 weeks to a year.

·       Developed a curriculum promoting positive self imaging and accomplishment of complex personal works though traditional muralist methods.

·       Conceptualized and designed 5 multimedia public art projects with groups

Graterford Prison Mural Program                                                  2004-2017

·       Led group of 20 inmates through mural making process

·       Developed classroom environment that encouraged leadership and team work

·       Created close to 35 works of public art within Philadelphia and inside the institution.

      Mural Corps Program                                                                                   2003-2009

·       Led group of 10 high school students for 4 ten-week sessions

·       Developed curriculum focusing on strengthening internet literacy, Photoshop and photography skills as well as fabricating large scale multimedia works of public art.

·       Created 12 large-scale multimedia murals throughout Philadelphia

SELECTED COMMISSIONS
International
2018 “Damfoss” Toemmerkaia 19, Skien 3732, Telemark, Norway
2017 “Våre refleksjoner/Our Reflections,” 7 Rådhusgata, Sandefjord, Vestfold, Norway
2017 “Vårt Sandefjord /Our Sandefjord,” 5 Storgata, Sandefjord, Vestfold, Norway
2014 “Azraq” Art For All 2014 Amman, Jordan
2010 "Biomimicry" Poligono San Pablo Seville, Spain

United States
2017 “Kingswood” 2300 Bowers St, Wilmington, DE
2016 “Building Towards Tomorrow” 185 Goffe St, New Haven, CT
2016 “Getting Back to the World” 900 Washington St, Wilmington, DE
2012 "Na Wai 'Eha" Main and Market Sts. Wailuku, HI

Philadelphia, PA
2018 “Almost Home” 885 Preston St
2018 “Hospitality, Mutuality, Transformation” 123 E Price St
2017 “Today I Can See in Color” Jefferson and Lawrence Streets
2017 “The Only Way Out is Through”  4631 Lancaster Ave
2016 “South Philly Singers Remix” Broad and Tasker Streets                                                                     
2016 “Contemplation, Clarity, Resilience” 5627 Chestnut St
2015 “Tribute to Dox Thrash Revisited” 1631 Girard Avenue
2015 “Fables of Fortune” 7th and Wolf Streets
2015 “Beyond the Wall” series of 35, installed and exhibited citywide
2014 “City of Innovation” Municipal Services Building Innovation Lab, 15th and Arch Sts
2014 “Settlement House Roots” Frankfort Ave and Master Streets
2013 “Above & Beyond” Broad and Cambria Streets
2012 "How We Fish" 8th and Cherry Streets
2012 "Family Interrupted" Germantown Ave and Dauphin St
2011 "The Community Action Center" District Attorney's Office
2010 "Changing Seasons, Lasting Symbols" City Hall Courtyard
2010 "Interactive Outdoor Classroom" 8th and Cumberland Streets
2010 “The Bottletree” Dickinson and Marsden Streets
2009 “This We Believe: Living in the Presence of History” Multiple Sites
2009 “From Behind the Mask” 52nd and Master Streets

 AWARDS AND HONORS
Hui No'eau Artist in Residence Maui, HI, 2012
Citywide Mural Competition Winner, 2009
1st Annual Nexus Gallery Graduating Artist Exhibition Winner, 2001