Tom Kalin commissioned by Visual AIDS, Alternate Endings, 2014. Promotional photograph for video
Visual AIDS presents ALTERNATE ENDINGS, a new video anthology marking the twenty-fifth anniversary of Day With(out) Art, featuring provocative work about the ongoing HIV/AIDS pandemic and other critical issues facing us today.
On December 1, 1989, Visual AIDS organized the first of what was then-called Day Without Art—a national day of action and mourning in response to the AIDS crisis. To honor its twenty-fifth year, Visual AIDS worked with filmmaker Tom Kalin to commission seven artists and collaboratives—Rhys Ernst, Glen Fogel, Lyle Ashton Harris, Derek Jackson, Tom Kalin, My Barbarian, and Julie Tolentino—to create new, short videos to be screened internationally on/around December 1, 2014.
A discussion featuring artists Glen Fogel, Tom Kalin, and My Barbarian (Malik Gaines, Jade Gordon and Alexandro Segade) will follow the screening.
ALTERNATE ENDINGS utilizes the medium of video to highlight the diverse voices of the seven commissioned artists as they bring together charged moments and memories from their personal perspectives amid the public history of AIDS. The unifying concept of ALTERNATE ENDINGS is one of a crossroads. The artists each position themselves within the present moment of HIV/AIDS cultural production, looking back at the historic past as they envision divergent narratives and possibilities for the future, because AIDS IS NOT OVER.
About Day With(out)Art / World AIDS Day
To make the public aware that AIDS can touch everyone and inspire positive action, some eight hundred international art and AIDS groups participated in the first Day Without Art in 1989, shutting down museums, sending staff to volunteer at AIDS services, or sponsoring special exhibitions of work about AIDS. Since then, Day With(out) Art has grown into a collaborative project in which an estimated eight thousand national and international museums, galleries, art centers, AIDS service organizations, libraries, high schools, and colleges take part. Throughout Day With(out) Art’s twenty-five-year history, Visual AIDS has initiated public actions and programs, published an annual poster and copyright-free broadsides, and acted as press coordinator and clearing house for projects for Day With(out)Art / World AIDS Day.
In 1997, Day With(out) Art was transitioned to become a day with art, as it had become clear that active interventions within the annual program were far more effective than actions to negate or reduce the programs of cultural centers. Though the name was retained as a metaphor for the chilling possibility of a future day without art or artists, parentheses were added to the program title, Day With(out) Art, to highlight the proactive programming of art projects by artists living with HIV/AIDS, and art about AIDS, that were taking place around the world.
Visual AIDS utilizes art to fight AIDS by provoking dialogue, supporting HIV+ artists, and preserving a legacy, because AIDS is not over.