andimgonnamisseverybody - Centerpiece Sculpture for AIDS MEMORIAL PATHWAY
20 x 20 x 3’ - Aluminum, bronze, and steel
This artwork is a portal into places of radical gathering, hospitality, celebration, and care that Black/Indigenous, trans/queer, displaced/invisibilized communities at the front lines of the HIV AIDS crisis have forged to take care of our own. These speakers, which hail from historic LGBTQ spaces from within this neighborhood and beyond, carry stories, as witnesses of our gathering and connections across time. They have witnessed the raves, house parties, discos, shows, and uprisings that have sustained community in the face of catastrophic loss. These speakers are time capsules holding memories of loved ones no longer with us.
Artist Christopher Jordan turns a plus sign on its side to shift thinking about HIV status. The X is recognized both as a symbol for love and a symbol for the unknown. Jordan incorporates the X as a symbol connecting HIV+ and HIV- people with the named and unnamed community members who have passed from AIDS. This X emulates the Dikenga, a West-African spiritual mark spread throughout the Americas by African descendants as a compass, mapping pathways through the afterlife.
The artwork invites us to honor those we have lost, to map our connections to the ongoing AIDS pandemic, and to strengthen connections between HIV+ and HIV- people. The X greets us at a crossroads between interlocking health emergencies, calling for renewed vigilance and action to end the systems of harm that place communities at risk. In a time where mass-incarceration, housing insecurity, HIV criminalization, anti-Blackness, transphobia, colonialism, sexism, and ableism deepen the impact of HIV and AIDS on targeted communities, this X is a call for transformative action.
The physical sculpture is accompanied by a virtual series of memorial DJ sets that celebrate the lives of loved ones who have passed on throughout the AIDS crisis. Stay tuned for announcements via instagram @chrispauljordan, you can also learn more about The AIDS Memorial path at theamp.org