Day Without Art began on December 1st 1989 as a national day of action and mourning in response to the AIDS crisis… In 1998, Visual AIDS suggested Day With(out) Art become a day WITH art, and change the name to Day With(out) Art, to recognize and promote increased programming of cultural events that draw attention to the continuing pandemic. [read more at Visual Aids]
In 1996, I launched Positive Visions, a special section of my Collected Visions web project for Day Without Art 1996 with photographs and stories by and about people living with HIV/AIDS, who have died of AIDS, or who are caretakers of people with HIV/AIDS. The Web was young but was already a site of activism. I remember contacting Creative Time who used to coordinate the online DWA activities. It was very exciting to be able to connect online with people I did not know and be part of something bigger.
In 1997, I collaborated with young people at the Hetrick-Martin Institute, not-for-profit agency serving gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and questioning youth in New York City, to create an online gallery. Each year I would try to collect more stories, but it became increasingly hard to get the word out and there were increasing number of projects dealing with stories around the AIDS pandemic, so I stopped collecting stories for Positive Visions in 2001.
Today I search #DayWithoutArt #WorldAidsDay
More history and perspective at Art 21 in conjunction with Visual Aids: 1989-What We Lost by Jim Hubbard.