LOVE POSITIVE WOMEN Workshops & Exhibition
For LOVE POSITIVE WOMEN 2016, Visual AIDS, the Fire Island Artist Residency, Dieu Donne and the International Community of Women Living With HIV (ICW) hosted a series of Valentine Workshops followed by an Exhibition of over 150 paper valentines created for LOVE POSITIVE WOMEN before mailing them to women living with HIV all around the world.
Three LOVE POSITIVE WOMEN Valentine Workshop were hosted on January 19 at Dieu Donné in New York City. Jointly, women living with HIV and artists from each organization were invited to create hand-made valentines in a paper making workshop. The valentines were then mailed with personalized messages to women living with HIV around the world as a gesture of love and support in hopes of lessening the stigma of living with HIV.
The LOVE POSITIVE WOMEN Exhibition, which was shown January 27 - February 3, 2016 showcased many of the valentines created by over 45 artists and women living with HIV, some of the participants included Polly Apfelbaum, Lesley Dill, Chuck Webster, Karen Heagle, Alex Jovanovich, Chris Bogia, Kia Labeija, Jessica Rankin, Dominic Nurre, Rebecca Levi, James Siena, Joyce McDonald and others. The Closing Reception was held Wednesday, February 3, 6–8PM and included brief reflections on the importance of love and community building from members of the Positive Women's Network and the International Community of Women Living with HIV, including Kia Labeija, Michelle Lopez, Deloris Dockrey, Rusti Miller-Hill and more.
About Love Positive Women and participating organizations:
LOVE POSITIVE WOMEN: Romance Starts at Home! is an ongoing project established by Visual AIDS artist member Jessica Whitbread in 2013. “Why not do something nice for the women most forgotten about?” says Whitbread. “Taking the time to do something for someone else is really beneficial to society as a whole. Don’t underestimate the value in something as simple as sending a valentine to a stranger.” LOVE POSITIVE WOMEN (LPW) is an international series of grassroots events established by Whitbread, that uses Valentines Day as a backdrop, creating a platform for individuals and communities to engage in public and private acts of love and caring for women living with HIV. Working from a place of strength, LPW focuses on the idea of interconnectedness, relationship building, loving oneself and loving ones community.
Dieu Donné is the world's leading cultural institution dedicated to serving artists through the collaborative creation of cutting-edge contemporary art using the process of hand papermaking.
The International Community of Women Living with HIV (ICW) is the only global network by and for women living with HIV. ICW exists to lead efforts towards securing and improving the quality of life for women living with HIV by mobilizing, organizing, advocating, mentoring, and raising consciousness on the issues that directly impact lives.
The Fire Island Artist Residency (FIAR) is an organization founded in 2011 which brings lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, and queer identifying emerging artists to Fire Island, a place long-steeped in LGBTQ history, to create, commune, and contribute to the location's rich artistic history. FIAR provides free live/work space to five selected artist residents who work, research, relax, and immerse themselves in the Fire Island community, during which time they are visited by a handful of renowned visiting artists, curators, and art professionals who commune with residents through intimate visits, dinners, and discussions, providing support and feedback.
Visual AIDS utilizes art to fight AIDS by provoking dialogue, supporting HIV+ artists, and preserving a legacy, because AIDS IS NOT OVER. Visual AIDS is the only contemporary arts organization fully committed to HIV prevention and AIDS awareness through producing and presenting visual art projects, while assisting artists living with HIV/AIDS. We are committed to preserving and honoring the work of artists with HIV/AIDS and the artistic contributions of the AIDS movement.
Friday, January 23, 2015 from 10:30am