2013-AIDS_is_Not_OverArt has long been apart of the response to HIV/AIDS…BUT DOES IT MATTER?


Visual AIDS was founded on the belief that art has a role to play within the ongoing AIDS crisis. As part of the NOT OVER exhibition series, Todd Lester will be moderating a discussion with artists, activists and scholars Charles Ryan, Nancy Brooks Brody, and Patrick “Pato” Hebert to explore the limits and possibilities of art within the epidemic.

Starting with the assertion that art does matter, this conversation promises to dive deeper into the question, provoking ideas of when art matters, how it matters, and what art can do. The event is free, everyone is welcome, and audience participation will be encouraged. The discussion will take place at La MaMa Galleria, within the context of the NOT OVER: 25 Years of Visual AIDSexhibition curated by Kris Nuzzi and Sur Rodney (Sur).

This program is made possible through a grant from the New York Council for the Humanities.


Charles Long is an artist. He is a long serving community organizer and activist with a focus on health and wealth distribution as well as race, sexuality, class and gender. He is currently working on a series of collaborative projects exploring legacy, love beyond the grave, and role models.

Nancy Brooks Brody’s drawings, paintings and sculptures have been shown in galleries across the U.S., including Virgil de Voldere Gallery, White Columns, Exit Art, Andrea Rosen, Lehmann Maupin and Weatherspoon, and in Europe at the Musee de Beaux Arts in Rouen, Trafic Haute-Normandie, and the Musee de Beaux Arts Bernay. She is a member of both LAVA and fierce pussy. In an Art in Americareview of her recent one-woman show at Virgil de Voldere, Sarah Valdez praised the artist’s “sure-footedness, patience and intelligence, adding, “It’s not often that an exhibition like this comes along.” In The New York Times, Holland Cotter has described her work this way: “The effect is like having Agnes Martin’s bars and bands transmitted as sound waves, a soft, vibrant humming.”

Patrick “Pato” Hebert is an intermedia artist, educator and cultural worker based in Los Angeles and New York. His work explores the aesthetics, ethics and poetics of interconnectedness. The practice works across a range of media including photography, installation, sculpture, language, light, temporality and graphic design. Progressive praxis, spatial dynamics and the spirit of social topographies are of particular interest.

Todd Lester Todd Lester has worked in leadership, advocacy and strategic communications roles at Reporters sans frontiers, the Astraea Lesbian Justice Foundation, and most recently  as the Executive Director of the Global Arts Corps, an organization that creates theatre to advance reconciliation in societies emerging from violent conflict. He founded freeDimensional, an organization that helps activists-in-distress by providing safe haven in artist residencies. Todd holds a Masters of Public Administration from Rutgers University and diplomas from the Summer School in Forced Migration at Oxford University and Film & Media Studies at the New School. Todd received the Peace Corps Fund Award for founding freeDimensional; was named Architect of the Future by the Waldzell Institute; and serves as a Senior Fellow at the World Policy Institute where he leads the Arts-Policy Nexus initiative. His new project, Lanchonete.org, is a 5-year experiment in artistic witnessing focused on a neighborhood in the center of São Paulo.  He is currently helping to spearhead Queer/Art, a new initiative to support ongoing efforts in mentorship, curatorial practice and networking for queer artists working in all mediums.

IMAGE: AIDS is Not Over by Edith Alvarez