Being new to the Art for AIDS International organization, when I was given the opportunity of taking part in a workshop I couldn’t wait. Walking around the gallery and seeing the amazing artwork hung up, I wondered how all of these young people could make such beautiful work. While I had heard the main idea about the workshops, I still had no idea what to expect.


It was a morning and no one knew each other that well, so we were all rather quiet.  We listened attentively as Hendrikus told us his story and more about Art for AIDS International. When it came our turn to talk about our own personal experiences is when we began to open up. What Hendrikus had done was create a safe space where everyone was on an equal playing field. Conversation flowed, and we were able to talk about all sorts of topics – from social inequality and discrimination, to the American presidential candidates. It was this openness that gave me the confidence to make my own artwork, and be proud of it as well.




171-08 Arthur Taylor



Taking part in an Art for AIDS International workshop helped me to not only understand the mission of the organization in general, but understand why it is so important. I think many people distance themselves from problems of HIV and AIDS in other countries because they seem far away – they are not affecting our lives here. What we now understand is that people all over the world are faced with problems of low self-esteem and inequality. Being able to have a space where these issues can be talked about freely made an impact in my realization of my inhibitions, and I can’t imagine what it is doing for others.