A countdown to the moment when HIV and AIDS become a thing of the past. A symbol of solidarity and a beacon of hope for everyone living with HIV today. A tribute to the buddies, carers, support workers, medical staff, activists and scientists who have given their all. And a memorial to the many loved ones lost to AIDS.
The AIDSmonument unveiled on December 1st 2016
The AIDSmonument in Amsterdam counts down till AIDS has left our world. On December 1st 2016 – World Aids Day – it will be unveiled. A huge signboard already denotes the exact location on the De Ruyterkade.
The work of art, designed by Jean-Michel Othoniel, will be located on the south-bank of the river IJ, between the Central Station and the concert hall Muziekgebouw aan ’t IJ. The striking feature of the landmark will be great scarlet beads made of handblown glass. The monument will get the shape of a giant abacus, which will count down the moment that AIDS has left our world for good.
The monument is an initiative of the foundation NAMENproject Nederland. It could be realized thanks to the support of art funds such as the Amsterdams Fonds voor de Kunst (Amsterdam Foundation for the Arts), Art of Impact and Zabawas, apart from many more sponsors and a crowdfunding via internet. The main sponsors are the Aids Fonds (Aids Foundation), the Amsterdam hospital OLVG, RELX Group (formerly Reed Elsevier) and ViiV Healthcare. Read more >
JEAN-MICHEL OTHONIEL TO design Amsterdam AIDS Monument
French artist Jean-Michel Othoniel has been commissioned to design the Amsterdam AIDS Monument, which will be unveiled alongside the banks of the River IJ during the course of 2016. The foundation’s art committee said: ‘Othoniel’s design shows that an AIDS monument need not be sombre. It combines an extremely delicate and charged subject matter with elegance and beauty. The stunning light along the banks of the River IJ will sparkle in the Murano glass beads. The design is also a perfect fit for the site. With this monument, Amsterdam will gain another artwork of true stature.’
The summer edition of the magazine Hello Gorgeous features an in-depth interview with Jean-Michel Othoniel. In it he explains why he chose an abacus for his design. ‘Numbers are very important when it comes to AIDS,’ the artist said. ‘Think of the number of deaths, the number of people living with HIV, CD4 counts, viral load.’ Above all, Othoniel sees the monument as a symbol of hope: ‘Beauty, comfort and hope are desperately needed in today’s world.’ The glass beads in his design will capture the light and captivate the attention of those passing by.
Stichting NAMENproject Nederland curates cultural heritage, such as the Dutch AIDS Memorial Quilt. The Quilt met a deeply-felt need to express the terrible loss caused by AIDS. The continuing interest in its digital version, AIDSmemorial.nl, shows that the need to remember and pay our respects remains as great as ever.
The board members of the foundation are:
Herman ter Balkt (former spokesman of Amsterdam Marketing)
Michiel Bollinger (freelance copywriter and theatre producer)
Stefan Silvestri (graphic designer at Gebr. Silvestri)
Jörn Wolters (biologist and thesaurus editor at the publisher Elsevier)
Wiebe van der Woude (former head of communication and fund-raising at Aids Fonds, the Dutch AIDS Foundation).
Gerrit Jan Wielinga (campaigner COC The Netherlands)
Support the AIDS Monument: contribute 25 euro
We still need a great deal of money to make the monument a reality. And you can help! Donate €25,- or more and you’ll receive a wonderful wrist band threaded with red beads, specially made in support of our cause.