The Mural Arts Program incorporates the concepts of restorative justice through art instruction, mural making, and community service work within the criminal justice system. Current inmates, ex-offenders, and juvenile delinquents are given the opportunity to learn new skills and make a positive contribution to their communities to repair the prior harm they may have caused. In the Mural Arts Restorative Justice program there is a growing emphasis on re-entry, reclamation of civic spaces, and the use of art to give voice to people who have consistently felt disconnected from society.
Mural Arts engages in collaborations with numerous government and nonprofit agencies, including:
- Pennsylvania Prison Society
- Philadelphia Department of Human Services
- Philadelphia Family Court
- Philadelphia Police Department
- Philadelphia Prison System
- St. Gabriel’s System
- State Correctional Institution at Graterford
Through weekly programs and opportunities for involvement, Mural Arts provides art instruction to over 300 inmates and 200 juveniles every year.
Annually the Restorative Justice program participants produce four to eight large-scale outdoor murals that incorporate community outreach and workshops in poetry, writing, ceramics, and other mediums.
For more information about the Restorative Justice programs, contact Robyn Buseman [firstname.lastname@example.org] Restorative Justice Program Director, 215-685-0756.
Eric Okdeh is a Philadelphia based muralist, who has been creating public art since 1998. After receiving his BFA in painting from Tyler School of Art, Eric chose to focus on mural work exclusively. Since 2002, in addition to his commissioned work, Eric has taught mural making classes to children and teens throughout the city as well as inmates at SCI Graterford Prison. The classes exist as leadership, teamwork, and skill building exercises which culminate in major mural projects. The SCI Graterford Class has completed over 25 such projects in and around the City of Philadelphia and collaborated with a variety of communities through Eric.
Eric has over 65 commissions throughout the city of Philadelphia and in Seville, Spain. He has participated in mural projects in Tucson, Arizona and Los Angeles. His work is featured in five books about public and Mural art.
For more information about Eric visit his website