Several University of Rochester groups are collaborating on an art installation to draw attention to the continuing AIDS crisis.
The students will be hanging several hundred yards of clothesline and black mourning clothing throughout Hirst Lounge and into the lowest level of Wilson Commons, the student center on the River Campus, to mark "Day With(out) Art/World Aids Day." The installation will be on display when the building opens at 8 a.m. Monday, Dec. 2, until 5 p.m. that afternoon.
"Day Without Art" began in 1989 as a national day of mourning for the AIDS victims, with hundreds of arts institutions either sponsoring special exhibits or closing their facilities and sending staff to volunteer at AIDS services for the day. In 1997, the event became a "Day with Art" to promote cultural programming as a way of increasing awareness of the continuing epidemic. More than 8,000 museums, galleries, art centers, AIDS service organizations, libraries, high schools, and colleges around the world now take part in the event.
"Besides raising awareness, events like this demonstrate support for people with HIV/AIDS and their caregivers," said Lucy Curzon of the Hartnett Art Gallery Committee, one of the groups sponsoring the installation. "Art can be part of community activism and can affect change."
In addition to the Hartnett Art Gallery Committee, students from Pride Network, Women's Caucus, and Spanish and Latino Students Association will be working on the installation the evening of Sunday, Dec. 1, which is World Aids Day. They will also be staffing an information table during the exhibit on Monday.