Eric Okdeh
“Art By All”
TEDxWilmingtonSalon: Fireside
Thursday, December 21st, 2017
Delaware Historical Society MORE INFO

Eric Okdeh, TEDxWilmingtonSalon: Fireside, TEDxWilmington, Wilmington, Delaware, TEDx

As I filled out my application, I was asked about 3 of my favorite TED talks. I’ve watched quite a lot throughout the years; this took time to whittle down. I discovered that my favorite talks act as a lesson to the audience. They include speakers who are currently or at one time in their lives stigmatized. This was my impetus moving forward.

I wanted my talk to be a lesson in community driven mural making. The communities we work with are oftentimes voiceless and have no outlet. The resulting work is socially trans-formative. It took me a few passes to get the talk right. My main feedback was to make it more personal, keeping in mind, why I do this. “Why do you do this?” is a great question. The answer can be nebulous and hard to pinpoint, but knowing enables you to move forward with conviction.

During my sessions with Geoffrey Berwind, we identified  bad habits while giving a talk, nervous “floating”, ending a sentence with a downward inflection, and not fully pronouncing words. The lessons Geoffrey gave me in that short time were immensely helpful. I noticed an instant difference my delivery.  Memorizing the script was not as big an issue as I thought. Now that its over, I’m glad to not get strange looks from people anymore as I walk in public, mumbling to myself! I bought a presentation remote, and was able to hit all of my cues during practice, in the rehearsal, and the talk.

Reflecting on the event, it was an honor to be included among such wonderful diverse speakers. Their talks inspired me to keep moving forward, and showed me where I can improve.  Our talks worked so well thematically. While the December 21st solstice date was ambitious, this marked a wonderful end to my 20th year creating murals in communities worldwide.


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. READ MORE

TEDxWilmingtonSalon: Fireside // Thursday December 21st 2017 // Delaware Historical Society