The AIDS Memorial Quilt and World AIDS Day
November 25th – December 1st 2014
Asheville Renaissance Hotel
Memorial Quilt Opening Night Reception
Join us Monday night, November 24th for our opening reception. Highlights of the evening will be: keynote speaker, Mike Smith, presentation of WNCAP’s quilting group’s new Quilt Panels, and remarks from the WNCAP and local community.
Mike Smith is the co-founder of the NAMES PROJECT AIDS Memorial Quilt and served as managing director there from 1987 to 1989. During his tenure there, the Quilt grew from an idea to more than 15,000 memorial panels in 20 countries. He managed the first two national tours in 1988 and 1989, and produced the first three displays in Washington DC in 1987, 1988 and 1989. In 1989, he and Cleve Jones and The NAMES Project Foundations were nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize and the film about the Quilt, Common Threads, received the Academy Award for Best Documentary. He returned to the NAMES Project in 1994 to oversee the digital media project that photographed and catalogue images of every Quilt panel. In 1996, he produce the last full-scale display of the Quilt in Washington DC that was visited by more than 1,100,000 people, including the first visit to the Quilt by a sitting U.S. President and Vice President.
Please check back for information about more events throughout the week and for our Worlds AIDS Day program on Monday, December 1st.
More about the AIDS Memorial Quilt and Names Project
Activist Cleve Jones began The AIDS Memorial Quilt in 1987. 1,920 panels were first displayed in the nation’s capital during the National March on Washington for Lesbian and Gay Rights in 1987, to highlight the scale of the epidemic. By 2007, the Quilt included more than 46,000 panels representing over 80,000 people and it continues to grow. It is a memorial to those lost to AIDS, a tool for preventing new HIV infections, and the world’s largest ongoing community art project.
Each section of the AIDS Quilt is twelve feet square, and typically consists of eight individual three foot by six foot panels sewn together. There are currently more than 40,000 panels, and virtually every one of them memorializes the life of a person lost to AIDS.
Throughout its history, The AIDS Memorial Quilt has been used to fight prejudice, raise awareness and funding, as a means to link hands with the global community in the struggle against AIDS, and as an effective tool in HIV and AIDS education and prevention.