PRESS RELEASE: The Kleinman Center for Energy Policy and Global Philadelphia Association (GPA) announce artist Eliza Nobles, who will paint Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) #7 Affordable and Clean Energy

The Kleinman Center for Energy Policy and Global Philadelphia Association (GPA) announce artist Eliza Nobles, who will paint Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) #7 Affordable and Clean Energy as part of GPA’s Philadelphia city public art campaign honoring each of the 17 SDGs

Media Contact:
Graziella DiNuzzo – 609-680-7670 – [email protected]

PHILADELPHIA (November 8, 2021) - Philadelphia, PA, 2021…Artist Eliza Nobles has been chosen to paint the public art for SDG #7, Affordable and Clean Energy. Philadelphia is the first World Heritage City in the United States and the first city to dedicate public art paintings that will reflect each of the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals

Nobles is a graduate student at the University of Pennsylvania pursuing a master of City Planning and a master of Environmental Studies. Her academic work centers around cultivating environmental health and justice through scientific research, urban design, and community activism. Nobles also has a personal interest in creating and curating art, and works with a variety of Philadelphia organizations and agencies to explore environmental sustainability through art and design.

Artist Eliza Nobles

For this public art project, Nobles submitted a concept entitled “The Four Elements,” which highlights a collaborative international effort to ensure affordable, reliable and sustainable energy for all. In this painting, the subject is Earth, held in place by four people. Each person represents one of four elements: sun, wind, earth, and water. 

“These four elements are the predominant renewable resources that can be employed to meet the U.N.’s Sustainable Development Goals,” Nobles said of her concept. “Solar energy, wind energy, geothermal energy and hydroelectric energy. These four resources are clean, affordable and accessible. They do not emit atmospheric carbon or other pollutants. They are renewable, and they can be widely implemented around the globe.”

The Kleinman Center for Energy Policy, a research center housed in the Stuart Weitzman School of Design at the University of Pennsylvania, selected Nobles as part of a campus-wide art competition. Penn faculty, students, and alumni were invited to submit a concept. Nobles won first prize, and the opportunity to create a larger piece of public art for display at FDR park. Alumna Lisa Reindorf was selected as runner up.

“Participating in this public art exhibition, specifically with SDG #7, provides us the perfect opportunity to connect our mission with the efforts of Global Philadelphia and the United Nations,” said Cory Colijn, executive director at the Kleinman Center. “SDG #7 is at the heart of our policy work—as we transition toward a more just and sustainable energy future.”

In 2019, GPA completed its first wall painting, SDG#5, Gender Equality, which was installed on the 17th Street side of Friends Select School. Each public artwork is 10’ X 10’ and will remain on the building for three years. 

For each SDG art that is created, GPA considers five partnership components: the sponsor, the host site, the artist, the giving of a project grant to a non-profit, and an accompanying academic project. 

The SDG public art campaign will also serve as a launching tool for GPA’s education campaign which will bring practical awareness to students and the community through various teaching guides and events.  

Click here for GPA SDG photos

The United Nations developed the 17 Goals to “Transform Our World” and as a “call for action by all countries – poor, rich and middle-income – to promote prosperity while protecting the planet. They recognize that ending poverty must go hand-in-hand with strategies that build economic growth and address a range of social needs including education, health, social protection, and job opportunities, while tackling climate change and environmental protection. The 17 Goals include: No Poverty, Zero Hunger, Good Health and Well Being, Quality Education Gender Equality, Clean Water and Sanitation, Affordable and Clean Energy, Decent Work and Economic Growth, Industry Innovation and Infrastructure, Reduced Inequalities, Sustainable Cities and Communities, Responsible Consumption and Production, Climate Action, Life Below Water, Life on Land, Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions, and Partnerships for Goals. 

“There is no time like the present to address the many global challenges we face. GPA is committed to raising awareness for the United Nations' 17 Sustainable Development Goals as it also connects with our Philadelphia World Heritage City Project’s mission to put the spotlight on Philadelphia’s globally connected city and heritage,” said Zabeth Teelucksingh, Executive Director, Global Philadelphia Association.


To date GPA has completed the following SDG murals: 

#1 No Poverty
Sponsors: John and Susan Smith
Artist: Gabe Tiberino
Non-profit recipient: Education, Culture Opportunities Foundation (ECO)
Mural location: 1575 N. 52nd Street and Jefferson, Philadelphia, PA 19131

Gabe Tiberino's SDG#1 No Poverty painting


#4 Quality Education 
Sponsor: St. Joseph’s University
Two Murals:
Artist: Isabella Akhtarshenas (Gompers School) and Arthur Haywood, SJU campus Drexel Library
(to be installed Spring ’22)
Non-profit recipient: Samuel Gompers School
Mural location: Samuel Gompers School, 5701 Wynnefield Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19131

Artist Isabella Akhtarshenas looking at her
SDG#4 Quality Education  artwork with her dog


#5 – Gender Equality
Sponsor: Glenmede Trust
Artist: Barbara Smolen
Non-profit recipient: The Gender Justice Fund
Mural location: 17th Street side of Friends Select School, 17th and JFK Blvd., Phil. PA 

Artist Barbara Smollen with her SDG#5 Gender Equality artwork

#10 Reduced Inequalities—to be unveiled November 9, 2021 at Temple University
Sponsor:  Temple University Office of International Affairs
Artist: Mat Tomezsko
Non-profit recipient: Temple IDEAL (Institutional Diversity, Equity, Advocacy and Leadership)
Mural location: Anderson Hall, Temple University campus  

Artist Mat Tomezsko standing in front of his
SDG#10 Reduced Inequalities artwork

SDG Mural unveilings coming soon: 

#11 Sustainable Cities and Communities
Sponsor: TD Bank Foundation
Artist: Nazeer Sabree
Non-profit recipient: TBD
Mural location: TBD 

#16 Peace, Justice, and Strong Institutions
Sponsor: Halloran Family Foundation
Artist: Russell Craig
Non-profit recipient: Project Home
Mural location: TBD 

About the GPA SDG Public Art Campaign Artists 

GPA has commissioned and celebrated, well-known Philadelphia-area artists to create and install original art on walls around Philadelphia. 

The first artist to be commissioned was Barbara Smolen. Smolen’s mural, honoring SDG#5 – Gender Equality can be seen at Friends Select School. 

Smolen's artistic practice focuses on social justice. For two decades her mural art throughout Philadelphia has beautified the city and drawn TV, radio, scholarly, and political coverage to issues such as gun violence, domestic abuse, immigration, food insecurity, and gender equality. She teaches drawing and design as an Adjunct Faculty Member in the Antoinette Westphal College of Media Arts and Design at Drexel University. Her work is in books and in public and private collections. 

Smolen’s SDG#5 mural is sponsored by Glenmede Trust. 

Gabe Tiberino, has completed SDG#1 No Poverty Goal artwork which is installed at Parkwest Town Center in West Philadelpha. 

Gabe explains he had no choice but to become an artist. "From the time I was born I lived in an environment erupting with a multitude of artists and creativity." After attending the High School for Creative and Performing Arts, he became a student at the prestigious Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. There, in May of 2005, he received his certificate and won the award for the Best Figurative Painter in the Student Exhibition. In 2008 PAFA bought his painting, "Tioga Street" for their permanent collection. Since 1998, he has been a part of the Mural Arts Program where everyone in the city and visitors can see and experience his inspiration on a grand scale.  

Mr. Tiberino’s SDG #1 mural is sponsored by John and Susan Smith.

Isabella Akhtarshenas has completed  SDG#4 Quality Education mural at Samuel Gompers School. An official unveiling is scheduled for September 30, 2021. 

Isabella Akhtarshenas is a versatile graphic designer and multidisciplinary artist. Her work strategically uses color and shape to evoke whimsical and lively forms. As an avid houseplant collector, she’s inspired largely by the beauty of nature and interested in design for environmental sustainability. A lot of her work focuses on the interactions between humans and nature in a hopeful fantasy where they can exist in symbiosis

Ms. Akhtarshenas’ SDG#4 mural is sponsored by Saint Joseph’s University. 

Arthur Haywood has been commissioned to complete the SDG#4 mural which will be located on St. Joseph’s University campus. 

Arthur Haywood's work celebrates the wonder of stories. His paintings are seen on murals for the Philadelphia Mural Arts Program, Sprocket Mural Festival, his book "The Great Library" and Space and Time Magazine. He exhibits his paintings in New York and Pennsylvania and completes commissions. He is focused on captivating Science Fiction and Fantasy stories. Creating murals and illustrations to inspire others and engage youth in reading is his passion. He is focused on making murals for libraries and schools in addition to book covers. 

Mr. Haywood’s SDG#4 mural is sponsored by Saint Joseph’s University. 

Mat Tomezsko, a Temple Tyler School of Art alum, has completed  SDG#10 Reduced Inequalities artwork which will is installed  on Temple’s campus at Anderson Hall.  

Mat Tomezsko is an artist from Philadelphia creating abstract paintings, public art installations, and community art projects based around participation and everyday visual language. His approach to composition is informed by mid-century formalism and conceptualism. His work was recognized by the 2017 Americans for the Arts Public Art Network Year in Review for outstanding public art. Tomezsko’s artwork has been exhibited at numerous art spaces regionally and nationally, including the Crane Arts, Woodmere Art Museum, the Center for Emerging Visual Artists (CFEVA), and Wexler Gallery in Philadelphia; Lillstreet Art Center in Chicago, IL; the Delaware Contemporary in Wilmington, DE; and Thomas Hunter Projects in New York, NY.

Mr. Tomezsko’s mural is sponsored by Temple University Office of International Affairs.

Russell Craig has been commissioned to complete SDG#16 Peace, Justice, and Strong Institutions  

Russell Craig is a painter and Philadelphia native whose work combines portraiture with deeply social and political themes. A self-taught artist who survived nearly a decade of incarceration after growing up in the foster care system, Craig creates art as a means to explore the experience of over criminalized communities and reassert agency after a lifetime of institutional control. His work has been shown at the Philadelphia African American Museum and included in group shows like Truth to Power; State Goods: Art in the Era of Mass Incarceration; and the OG Experience and has garnered coverage in outlets including the Philadelphia Inquirer, The Washington Post, Artsy, The Guardian, and The New York Times. Craig is an alumni of Mural Arts Philadelphia’s Restorative Justice Guild program, a 2017 Right of Return Fellow, and a 2018 Ford Foundation: Art for Justice Fellow.

Mr. Craig’s SDG#16 mural is sponsored by the Halloran Family Foundation. 

Nazeer Sabree has been commissioned to complete the SDG #11 Sustainable Cities and Communities mural. 

Nazeer Sabree is a contemporary African American artist from Philadelphia. His subjects are often centered around the African American experience and capturing black culture. Nazeer has a photo realism quality when rendering figures and combines them with raw expressive backgrounds and incorporates abstract mark making. Nazeer has been illustrating images since the young age of 6, at age 18 he began to learn how to paint with acrylics and oil. Nazeer has attended numerous programs and schools centered around the arts. After meeting his mentor Randy Chavez, Nazeer began to learn at a rapid pace, he would study master paintings from other artists and also paint for hours on end. Inspired by the narratives and storytelling in most of the works he studied such as, "the raft of the medusa" and "Nymphs and Satyr" He begins incorporating those same qualities from those works. Many of Nazeer's paintings capture stories from his life or the sitter's life. Most of his works have subtle references from historical and sometimes even biblical events, he connects them to current events to ignite conversations that most people are not about speaking about. Randy Chavez, Kehinde Wily, Jean Michel Basquiat, Kaws and David Grove are his artistic influences and inspirations.

Mr. Sabree’s SDG #11 mural is sponsored by TD Bank.

About Global Philadelphia Association

The Global Philadelphia Association consists of more than 200 internationally involved organizations, businesses, and individuals in Greater Philadelphia. It was created to assist—and to encourage greater interaction among—the many organizations and people who are engaged in international activity in the Greater Philadelphia Region, to promote the development of an international consciousness within the area, and to enhance Philadelphia’s global profile. For more information, visit website: