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TAG Excited to Return to the Desert Communities Following 2022 Introduction


CONTACT: Jason Kirk, Treatment Action Group,, 843-751-7580

February 9, 2023 — Treatment Action Group (TAG) is pleased to present the exhibition “35 Years of Art to End AIDS” at Melissa Morgan Fine Art in Palm Desert, CA. The exhibition features selected works from TAG’s Limited Art Editions Collection and will run from March 17 through April 7. The opening reception, free and open to the public, is on Friday, March 17, from 4:00 pm through 8 pm. All the works in the exhibition will be available for purchase and every dollar will support the continuing work of TAG.

TAG’s Limited Art Editions began in 1999 with the donation of over 30 silver gelatin selenium-toned prints photographed from 1988 through 1992 by Ben Thornberry. These images illustrate the darkest period of the AIDS epidemic, and include ACT UP members marching to deliver dirty needles to the NYC Health Commissioner; police arresting activists at the FDA in Bethesda, MD; and activists staging a “die-in” moments before a police charge at the Republican National Convention, Houston, Texas. Though some of the photographs are difficult to look at, this collection of images accurately depicts the often-heartbreaking reality of the early AIDS epidemic in the United States.

In 2005, in conjunction with TAG’s annual Research in Action Awards, board member and artist Joy Episalla expanded TAG’s Limited Art Editions by inviting other artists to create a limited art edition especially for TAG. Since then, a new unique edition has been debuted every year.

Works on display include pieces Richard Renaldi, Matt, Fort Worth, TX (2005); Carrie Yamaoka, 25/Blues (2007); Donald Moffett, Enlarged Hypothalamus (2009); fierce pussy, Twisted (2010); Bill Jacobson, New Year’s Day #5090 (2011); Nan Goldin, Apocalypse NY (2013); Kate Shepherd, For the ever, avec Souci (2014); Joy Episalla, Celestial Bodies, (40° 44’ N x 73° 59’ W), 1 (2015); Rosalind Fox Solomon, Animal Landscape (2016); Erica Baum, Peer (2017); Glenn Ligon, Black Rage (back cover) (2019), Keith Mayerson, Homage to America’s Doctor, Anthony S. Fauci (2020); Nancy Brooks Brody, Book Marks (2021); and Rafael Sánchez, Tintura del Sol (2022).

We gratefully thank all the artists who have generously contributed their time and their works to the TAG Limited Art Editions which have helped sustain TAG’s work and mission. TAG also wishes to thank board member and Palm Springs resident, Kevin Goetz, his husband Neil Goetz, and Palm Springs philanthropic leader, Ellen Irvine née Wolf, for their efforts to bring this exhibition to the desert communities.

This exhibition builds upon the success that TAG gained with its event on May 1, 2022, attended by desert leaders, community advocates, and the likes of Billy Porter, where TAG introduced attendees to the work and mission of the organization. In an effort to bring the community together and support the work of Phillip K. Smith III through the Palm Springs AIDS Memorial Sculpture, TAG will donate a significant work of art to help ensure the lives of those lost to HIV/AIDS are never forgotten.

Treatment Action Group just entered its fourth decade, and is an independent, activist, and community-based research and policy think tank committed to racial, gender, and LGBTQ+ equity; social justice; and liberation, fighting to end HIV, tuberculosis (TB), and hepatitis C virus (HCV). TAG catalyzes open collective action by affected communities, scientists, and policymakers to ensure that all people living with or impacted by HIV, TB, or HCV — especially communities of color and other marginalized communities experiencing inequities — receive life-saving prevention, diagnosis, treatment, care, and information.

Melissa Morgan Fine Art, who has generously donated their gallery and support for this exhibition, is located at 73-660 El Paseo, Palm Desert, CA, 760-341-1056, Gallery hours are Monday – Saturday, 10 am – 5 pm.


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