| Largest Quilt Display of the Year Comes to Tacony.
For the first time, panels of the legendary AIDS Memorial Quilt will be on display for one night only in Northeast Philadelphia. The free event on Friday, November 17 from 6-9 pm will have live music, beer and wine, and fourteen blocks of The AIDS Memorial Quilt. The AIDS Memorial Quilt Display will take place at the newly renovated Tacony Library, Free Library of Philadelphia, 6742 Torresdale Avenue, Philadelphia, at the intersection of Torresdale Avenue and Knorr Street. The event represents the first time The Quilt has been displayed in Northeast Philadelphia. Music will be provided by local band The SB Deluxe.
The AIDS Memorial Quilt Display is presented by AIDS Fund and Southeast Northeast - The SENE (SENE), a new organization. Additional support is provided by Tacony Community Development Corporation; The Tacony LAB (a partnership of Mural Arts Philadelphia and The Office of Councilman Bobby Henon); Tacony Branch - Free Library of Philadelphia, Free Library of Philadelphia; and The Office of Councilman Bobby Henon.
AIDS Fund curates some of the panels with local ties to the Philadelphia area for events throughout the region all year long. The Quilt is a 54-ton, handmade tapestry that stands as a memorial to more than 96,000 individuals lost to AIDS. Established in 1987, The NAMES Project Foundation is the international organization that is the custodian of The AIDS Memorial Quilt. The AIDS Memorial Quilt began with a single 3’ x 6’ panel created in San Francisco in 1987. Today, The Quilt is composed of more than 49,000 individual 3’ x 6’ panels, each one commemorating the life of someone who has died of AIDS. These panels come from every state in the nation, every corner of the globe and they have been sewn by hundreds of thousands of friends, lovers and family members into this epic memorial, the largest piece of ongoing community art in the world.
In a war against a disease that has no cure, The AIDS Memorial Quilt has evolved as the most potent tool in the effort to educate against the lethal threat of AIDS. By revealing the humanity behind the statistics, The AIDS Memorial Quilt helps teach compassion, triumphs over taboo, stigma and phobia; and inspires individuals to take direct responsibility for their own well-being and that of their family, friends and community.
“Events like The AIDS Memorial Quilt Display reflect the diversity of Northeast Philadelphia,” stated Philadelphia City Councilman Bobby Henon. “This powerful event will serve as a reminder about the impact of the AIDS epidemic, and provide a way for the community to come together.”
In addition, another creative educational component will be the “1981-Until It's Over..." AIDS Timeline, a large text and photographic timeline of 30 years of HIV/AIDS history. Created by AIDS Fund, the Timeline memorializes large-impact moments every year during the history of the epidemic.
“AIDS Fund is pleased to partner with so many organizations to raise awareness of the HIV epidemic to Northeast Philadelphia,” said AIDS Fund Executive Director Robb Reichard. “It is especially important this year as it rained at AIDS Walk Philly on October 15, and we couldn’t display The AIDS Memorial Quilt as we normally do. So many people wanted to pay their respects to loved ones, and we are grateful to have a new opportunity to welcome them and many others.”
“SENE is committed to bringing new, creative programs to our community in and around Tacony,” said Troy Everwine of Southeast Northeast Philadelphia Arts Collective. “The AIDS Memorial Quilt is a powerful piece of public art, and I’m excited by the opportunity to share it with the Northeast. Art can speak to us where words sometimes fail. The Quilt is a poignant reminder that the HIV epidemic isn’t over.”