What started as a dream to construct an AIDS Monument has transformed into a movement for change...
As the AIDS epidemic continues to impact communities across the country the Las Memorias AIDS Monument in Lincoln Park, Los Angeles continues to anchor the work of The Wall- Las Memorias Project in local communities and across the country. What began as a local community project, blossomed into the first publicly funded AIDS monument in the nation.
In 2004, after a years-long battle with opposition, the first publicly funded AIDS monument in the nation was dedicated before thousands of supporters and community leaders. Las Memorias AIDS Monument now has over 360 names etched into it — the names of people who have died from AIDS complications.
The AIDS monument was designed by architect David Angelo and public artist Robin Brailsford. A community advisory board selected the site in 1993, based upon its rich cultural and artistic history with the Latino community and its proximity to the local AIDS Treatment Center at County USC Hospital, the Rand Schrader AIDS Clinic.
The Las Memorias AIDS Monument was designed as a Quetzalcoatl serpent, an Aztec symbol for rebirth. The monument consists of eight wall panels: six murals depicting life with AIDS in the Latino community and two granite panels that contain the names of individuals who have died from AIDS. The monument also includes a serene park setting with benches and an archway set in garden areas for personal meditation. The total size of the monument is about 9,000 square ft., with half of this area being developed as new landscaping.
The cost of the AIDS monument is $700,000 and made possible by the State of California through the leadership of then-State Senator Gilbert Cedillo and the City of Los Angeles. To ensure the future upkeep of the monument, the agency has created an endowment fund to cover the cost of the maintenance. In addition, a community advisory board has been established to monitor the site and the needs of the monument at Lincoln Park.
Though the focus of the AIDS awareness campaign is targeted to the Latino and LGBTQ community, the names submission process is open to everyone.
New names are added annually with their unveiling at a special ceremony called Noche De Las Memorias (A Night of Memories) on World AIDS Day, December 1st.
The Las Memorias AIDS Monument is located in Lincoln Park,
3600 N. Mission Road, Los Angeles, CA 90031