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HIV+ since 1990, I am the daughter of two Hong Kongers born in America. Having grown up in Bolivia as a Chinese person — an ultra-minority — I faced a lot of discrimination. The resilience I developed became vital tools for survival as an HIV+ individual.

My important roles include being the mother of Atom (b. 2000) and Ahimsa (b. 2004). They are the “sons of AIDS activists” both born HIV-negative — a testament to the diligent work of AIDS activists. I’ve also been a member of the Ryan White Planning Council and a lifelong member of the PWA Health Group. I’ve organized and volunteered with the Asian Pacific Islander Coalition on HIV/AIDS (APICHA) and God’s Love We Deliver.

Since 2021 I’ve spearheaded the AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power (ACT UP) and Treatment Action Group (TAG) Health Fair during New York City’s Pride March. We offer critical services such as COVID-19 vaccinations, HIV testing, mental health support, and gender-affirming care. Additionally, I serve as TAG’s board treasurer supporting the smart and prolific staff that undertakes profound and meaningful work.

A graduate of the Art Center College of Design, I’ve co-owned Arce + Kwan Inc. with my husband Alejandro Arce. Our clients have included HBO ESPN and National Geographic. I have worked at entities like Bassat Oglivy and Milton Glaser Inc., and my creative work includes book design posters and titles for the film, Forrest Bess: Key to the Riddle, directed by Chuck Smith and Ari Marcopoulos. Additionally, I designed the poster and titles for the biographical documentary Barbara Rubin & the Exploding NY Underground chronicling the influential 1960s experimental filmmaker and scene-maker. I chair Arts & Culture on Manhattan’s Community Board 2. In 2022 collaborative projects with Julie Tolentino were featured in the Whitney Biennial. Dear to my heart are activist projects with the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) a Nobel Prize winner marked by projections on the United Nations Building and Fort St. Angelo.

Photo of artist, former RIAA honoree and TAG board treasurer, Ivy Kwan Arce; Chinese woman smiling, longish dark hair
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