Arts activities recognize the toll of AIDS on creativity

Area art organizations, from Walters Art Gallery to the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, will take part Sunday in the annual observance of A Day Without Art (also known as World AIDS Day), held in recognition of the impact of AIDS on the arts world.

Started two years ago by the New York-based Visual AIDS, it has become an international event involving thousands of organizations.


Locally, some observances will occur Sunday while others are scheduled around the day. Tomorrow, for example, School 33 Art Center will drape its gallery entrance in black in memory of the people lost to AIDS; it also will post a statement about the AIDS crisis.

On Sunday the Walters Art Gallery will close the second floor loggia of its 1904 building and the Baltimore Museum of Art will have two screenings, at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m., of the film "Common Threads: Stories From the Quilt," about some of the people represented in the NAMES project AIDS quilt.


Galerie Francoise et Ses Freres will be open Sunday from noon to 4 p.m. and will donate 10 percent of its sales that day to HERO (Health Education Resources Organization). The gallery will also make a contribution to Visual AIDS.

Artshowcase gallery is publishing a limited edition print of Raoul RTC Middleman's pastel "Winter Trees," with 10 percent of all sales the first week of December going to the Chase-Brexton AIDS clinic.

Mount Vernon Place United Methodist Church will be the site of a candlelight vigil Sunday at 6 p.m. Organized by volunteers who help AIDS patients, the vigil will include speakers, music and prayers. All are welcome.

At Center Stage, following each of the two performances Sunday of "My Children! My Africa!" and "The Queen and the Rebels," a cast member will talk about the meaning of the day and encourage patrons to contribute to their charity of their choice.

At the Lyric Opera House, ushers and box office personnel for "A Chorus Line" will wear red ribbons in recognition of the day and a pre-curtain statement will be made dedicating the performance to artists whose lives have been affected by AIDS and asking audience members to support local AIDS organizations.

Also, at 11 p.m. Thursday at Christophers, York and Padonia roads, the cast of "A Chorus Line" will perform original songs and readings and numbers from other shows to benefit AIDS Action Baltimore and Actors Equity Fights AIDS. Admission is $10 and the program includes a charity auction of items including theater and movie tickets, meals and other prizes. Call (410) 837-2437.

This weekend's pop concerts by the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra will mark the occasion with an insert in the program book that notes how many creators in the arts have been lost to AIDS. It will also list phone numbers of organizations that combat AIDS.

Maryland Art Place will be closed this weekend for the Thanksgiving holiday, but will have an AIDS window display and subsequently will sell a Laure Drogoul poster made from memorial cards to those who have died. Sale proceeds will benefit Moveable Feast, a non-profit organization that provides meals to people with AIDS.


On Monday, there will be a World AIDS Day observance at the Baltimore Veterans Affairs Medical Center from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Open to the public, it will include entertainment, an interfaith chapel service and a quilt panel display.

The BAUhouse will present an exhibit and two performances in December in recognition of the AIDS crisis. The exhibit, "Living With HIV," will consist of wall installations related to those whose lives have been affected by the crisis; opening at 5:30 p.m. Friday, it runs through Dec. 21.

At 8 p.m. Dec. 19 a program of films and dramatic readings will be presented. Robert Hilferty's film "Stop the Church" will be screened at 8 p.m. Dec. 20; a discussion of the issues it raises will follow.