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Artist: Ricky Lee Gordon Aka Freddy Sam

Teaching Artist: Patricia A. Barrera

Assistant: James Dunn

Site: 161 West Cecil B. Moore Ave, Philadelphia, PA


About the Project 

In August 2013, South African street artist and muralist Ricky Lee Gordon aka Freddy Sam made a brief stop in Philadelphia to work with Mural Arts Philadelphia. An internationally acclaimed artist, Ricky came to the USA this summer to paint murals in Rochester, Philadelphia and Atlanta. During his stay in Philly, he worked with a group of art education students to create a new work of public art in the Kensington.

In the classroom, Ricky acted as both expert artist and collaborator. On his first day, he gave a presentation about his artwork and curatorial projects like A Word of Art, and then worked with our students to develop a series of abstract geometric patterns which were incorporated into the mural design.

The next day, Ricky and the students went out to the mural site and began work on his first public art project in Philadelphia. Together Moving Mountains shows a springbok (a species of antelope) drinking from a river, with a ribbon of the students’ geometric patterns at ground level beneath the scene. Ricky’s work often features South African animals and scenes from nature. While the students were just at the mural for one day, Ricky worked through the weekend and finished the entire piece in just three days.

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