Shan Kelley, With Curators Like These, Who Needs A Cure, 2015
Special Programs

Visual AIDS Day With(out) Art 2015: Radiant Presence

  • to This is a past program
RADIANT PRESENCE is a digital slideshow with images from the Visual AIDS's Artist+ Registry, the largest database of works by artists with HIV/AIDS. For the 26th annual Day With(out) Art, Visual AIDS will partner with art institutions, AIDS-service organizations, and universities for screenings, looping office and gallery projections, and public programs to highlight RADIANT PRESENCE internationally. Visual AIDS will also coordinate large-scale projections of RADIANT PRESENCE in highly visible locations in New York City, San Francisco, and Miami during Art Basel.

The Hammer will present the RADIANT PRESENCE slideshow on a continuous loop from 11 a.m–5 p.m. in commemoration of World AIDS Day. In addition, throughout the day the Hammer will highlight related works from its collection and recent exhibitions on its Instagram account, @hammer_museum. You can follow Day With(out) Art on social media: #RadiantPresence / #DayWithoutArt / @visual_AIDS.

At this point in the AIDS epidemic, over 39 million people have died of AIDS-related causes. The nature of the crisis has changed, however, so that nearly just as many people, 36 million, are living with HIV today. In this context, RADIANT PRESENCE showcases the resilience and vitality of Visual AIDS’s Artist Members and their artwork, preserving the radiance of those who have passed while provoking dialogue about the needs and experiences of people living with HIV. 

RADIANT PRESENCE is inspired by the 25th Anniversary of Electric Blanket, an epic slide show about AIDS created by photographers Nan Goldin, Allen Frame and Frank Franca for Visual AIDS which intersperses the work of over 200 photographers with slide texts that include demographics, data, and slogans about AIDS worldwide. The slide show, initially projected on the façade of Cooper Union on December 1, 1990, was later projected on public walls and buildings internationally.

This year’s slideshow is organized by nine artists, activists, and curators: Bill Arning, director, Contemporary Arts Museum Houston; Ian Alteveer, associate curator in the Department of Modern and Contemporary Art, The Metropolitan Museum of Art; artist Chris Vargas; artist Rae Lewis-Thornton; author Mark S. King; artist and writer Allen Frame;  author Maria Mejia; Jack Mackenroth, senior communications officer, The Global Forum on MSM and HIV; and Kimberly Drew, founder of “Black Contemporary Art.”

Learn more about the artists involved in RADIANT PRESENCE and Visual AIDS.

Download the RADIANT PRESENCE resource guide, an 8-page printable booklet that expands on the conversations raised in the slideshow. 


Location: Annex
Ticketing: This drop-in program is not ticketed.
Parking: Under the museum, $3 for 3 hours with validation (cash only)