In the lead up to the opening of the New York City AIDS MemorialSurface spoke with notable cultural figures who experienced the height of the crisis. Jenny Holzer turned excerpts from those interviews into a new series of artworks projected on the city's streets.

Gary Garrels
Curator 

Artists were dying. There was art that would never get the chance to be done. The community and the public were losing artists, and art was a victim. It really was like a plague. To bring that into a big public focus and make people realize what the loss was. There was this sense of an unknown, ravaging beast that was set loose in the world. It was mysterious, frightening, and incredibly sad. It was this swelling of people together feeling the loss. Feeling the frustration. The terror. The fright. We felt impotent. So many things were not clear. It was confusing.

View the full collaboration here: Reflecting on AIDS: Jenny Holzer in Collaboration with Surface

Artwork by Jenny Holzer
©2016 Jenny Holzer, member Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
Photos: Dani Vernon