"Medicine Man" Sculpture
"Medicine Man" Sculpture
Limited Edition: 32
Exhibition: Make Art/Stop AIDS
Material: Printed vinyl
Dimensions: 35" x 96" (88.cm x 243.cm)
Hanging Hardware Included
The UCLA project Make Art/Stop AIDS is comprised of artists, scholars, and activists committed to ending the global AIDS epidemic. From the group's exhibition at UCLA's Fowler Museum come 32 banners featuring the 2007 sculpture Medicine Man. The spindly, over-lifesize sculpture is constructed entirely of empty HIV/AIDS medicine bottles and syringes. The jars were collected over the past 15 years by the two HIV-positive artists who created the work, the San Francisco-based Daniel Goldstein and John Kapellas. Suspended from strings, the sculpture seems fragile and ephemeral. It is a very visual reminder of the sheer quantity of life-sustaining drugs which must be taken by HIV-positive individuals.
Make Art/Stop AIDS is a concerned group of artists, scholars and activists united in the goal of ending the global AIDS epidemic. The UCLA-based program views artists as an essential part of society and as valuable contributors to anti-AIDS efforts. The arts communicate, and artists have the ability to transmit messages, educate, and share information through their work.
This banner from the group’s recent exhibition at the Fowler Museum at UCLA is constructed from nearly 300 empty HIV medication bottles. The bottles and vials were collected over the past 15 years and represent medicine taken by the sculpture’s HIV-positive artists Daniel Goldstein and John Kapellas as well as their friends and partners. Shown on the banner’s black background the work, Medicine Man, floats eerily in space. The medicine bottles are suspended on steel wire and create the form of a floating figure. Surrounding the figure are over 100 syringes, each tipped with a drop of red. This creates an energy-field around the figure that both bombards it inwardly and emanates from within. One of the works’ creators, Daniel Goldstein, states simply that “the piece speaks to the joy of living after having experienced so much death.”
The other side of this banner is black with white and yellow text that reads “Fowler Museum at UCLA/Make Art/Stop AIDS/February 23 to June 15, 2008”.
These banners were displayed around Los Angeles, California from February 23 through June 15, 2008 to promote the exhibition Make Art/Stop AIDS at the Fowler Museum at UCLA. The exhibition went on to venues in Brazil, South Africa, and India.