Seattle AIDS Memorial Selects Lead Artist

Community leaders, in partnership with the City of Seattle, are poised to move forward on a plan to create an AIDS memorial on Seattle’s Capitol Hill.

In March 2018, The AMP: AIDS Memorial Pathway and Seattle’s Office of Arts & Culture issued a call for artists to submit qualifications for the project, which will be a physical place for remembrance and reflection, utilizing technology to share stories about the epidemic and the diverse community responses to the crisis and providing a call to action to end HIV/AIDS, stigma, and discrimination.

A five-member, community-based selection panel reviewed the submissions and interviewed three finalists in June. The committee assisted by advisers, also community based, selected social practice artist Horatio Hung-Yan Law to lead a team of artists to complete the project. Law pursued at MFA at Washington University in St. Louis, MO. The impetus for his arts degree was his first-hand experience during the early years of the AIDS crisis in the 1980’s and 1990’s.

“Much of my work stems from my identity and experience as a gay US citizen of Asian heritage,” says Law. “Social interaction and community participation are important aspects in my installation work and public art projects. I create work for regular people that examines issues of identity, memory, history and the meaning of community. As a public artist who is interested in socially engaged work, I value collaboration and partnership with community members through collecting ideas, cultural materials, and engaging residents in planning and production of public art.”

“Horatio has created wonderful works of public art in Seattle and other communities,” according to Tom Rasmussen, The AMP’s Chair. “We’re thrilled to work with this talented and sensitive artist. There will be many opportunities for public involvement as he begins to develop the art plan for the AMP.”

Horatio Law’s public art portfolio includes works created for the City of Tacoma, the Housing Authority of Portland, City of Seattle, Oregon State Hospital, Sisters of the Road, Tri-Met’s Portland-Milwaukee Light-Rail Line, Portland Parks & Recreation, and Seattle’s Asian Counseling and Referral Service.

The AMP: AIDS Memorial Pathway is part of the Seattle Capitol Hill Light Rail Station Development, a long-awaited and transformational project for the Capitol Hill neighborhood. Slated to open in mid-2020, The AMP will be located on the north edge of Cal Anderson Park and on the public plaza of the Capitol Hill Light Rail Station. The Station will include four buildings and will provide 428 apartments, including 178 affordable apartments, and ground floor retail. The development will also include a community room available to the public and a public plaza that will serve as the home of Capitol Hill Neighborhood Farmers Market as well as a venue for other community events.

Information about Horatio Law and the project’s history, site selection, and current status is available at TheAMP.org.

The AMP: AIDS Memorial Pathway is supported by the City of Seattle, the Seattle Parks Foundation, Pride Foundation, Lucky 7 Foundation, and individual donors.

Image: Lost & Found
10′ x 30′ x 30′
Screen size: 8′ x 8′
Mixed-media installation.
Single-Channel Video Projection on Silk Rose Petals and Red Thread. Image Gallery, Pacific Northwest College of Art, Portland, Oregon
An installation with projection and sound on a screen made of silk rose-petal and red silk thread. The projection is a series of portraits of Portland parents and their adopted Chinese children projected on an 8’x8′ screen; a soundtrack of a Buddhist chant plays softly in the background. The installation is a meditation on conflicting issues raised by trans-cultural adoptions: individuals and the collective, uniqueness and commonality, longing and belonging, loss and gain. The screen symbolically and literally stitched the family together, as the screen itself was communally constructed by families and friends over several weeks.