Out of the Ashes installation for World AIDS Day 2022


Our work at SPOKE began 31 years ago to create a place where people gather to reflect and remember those lost to the AIDS pandemic. This mission remains just as urgent today as we face multiple pandemics of COVID-19, racism, and addiction, alongside the continuing scourge of HIV/AIDS, particularly among vulnerable populations. Days Without Art will be a series of cultural events and actions connecting World AIDS Day, Dec 1st with National Black HIV Awareness Day, Feb 7th.

We see this as a time to remember who we are for ourselves and who we can be for one another.

This year for our Days Without Art/World AIDS Day installation, we invite people to send us an obituary or photo of someone you love who may have been lost Someone who has touched  your life physically, spiritually, or emotionally. There are four additional ways to participate, detailed below.   The obituaries will be turned into small spirit bowls and the photos will be drawn onto newspaper obituaries of those we lost during the dying years of HIV/AIDS.

They will be installed on December 1st at the Boston Center for the Arts, along with 30 sections of the historic AIDS/Names Memorial Quilt.

There are five different thresholds to cross, different ways to embody “Art As Threshold” to participate in this year’s Days Without Art: Touched – In Times of Pandemic. In addition to these thresholds, we are also seeking volunteers  from our community to help us put on this event.

1. Send us a photo or an obituary to be used in the installation. You are welcome to attend one of our workshps on November 3, 10 or 7th 6-9 pm 844 Summer Street . Photos and obituaries can be sent to: SPOKE/MWProductions 840 Summer Street #103 Boston, MA 02127

2.Contribute a live offering performance during one of our 24-hour vigil on World AIDS Day, December 1st, at the Boston Center for the Arts Cyclorama sign up here

3.Sponsor a section of the historic Names AIDS Memorial Quilt. In June of 1987, a small group of strangers gathered in a San Francisco storefront to document the lives they feared history would neglect. Their goal was to create a memorial for those who had died of AIDS, and to thereby help people understand the devastating impact of the disease. Help us bring 30 of the original 1,920 panels that represented the names of those lost, which will be proudly displayed alongside a quilt of our own creation.
Please consider sponsoring a panel for $200.00. Please let us know if you would like a specific panel.

4.Bring an offering to leave in the Medicine Wheel altar during the 24-Hour Vigil on December 1st, World AIDS Day. Visitors are welcome to place an honorary object in the wheel, whether it be in memory of a loved one that has died from AIDS, COVID, or any of the ongoing pandemics we’re commemorating this year.

5.Make a general donation. Any and all support towards our signature Days Without Art event ensures that we can continue our work to perpetuate the mission that we started 30 years ago. Thank you in advance for your generous support.

Volunteer with Us!
Installation (November 28 & 29)
Gift Shop Shift (December 1)
Deinstallation (December 2)

*Specify the volunteer opportunity interested in