AIDS is an everyday experience. The dates on this calendar all relate to the AIDS crisis. Some are globally known; others are drawn from personal experiences.

This online calendar is produced in partnership with Visual AIDS and is an extension of the exhibition “EVERYDAY,” which was curated by Jean Carlomusto, Alexandra Juhasz and Hugh Ryan in 2016. The exhibition and accompanying print calendar explored the AIDS crisis—historically and currently—through the lens of art and ephemera that examines and evidences daily experiences and practices in response to HIV/AIDS. Artists featured in the “EVERYDAY” exhibition were invited to submit as many dates to the calendar as they desired.

We invite you to reflect upon these dates, and this artwork, in dialogue with one another. We also encourage you to submit dates of your own by clicking here. Submissions may include the date of your diagnosis, the date of the loss of a loved one to AIDS-related illness or a significant milestone in your life with HIV/AIDS.

New submissions will be continually added to the calendar because AIDS is not over.


On his first day at San Francisco General Hospital, Paul Volberding, MD, sees his first HIV-positive patient with Kaposi sarcoma. (1981)

The U.S. Public Health Service opens the National AIDS Hotline to respond to public inquiries about the disease. By the end of the month, it receives 8,000 to 10,000 calls daily. (1983)

Tim Bailey Political Funeral organized by the Marys, an ACT UP affinity group, is brought to Washington DC, activists face a stand off with police. (1993)


FDA approves emtricitabine (FTC) brand name Emtriva. (2003)



The New York Times publishes the first major news story about HIV, “Rare Cancer Seen in 41 Homosexuals,” by Lawrence K. Altman. (1981)

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approves the first at-home HIV test. It provides results within 40 minutes. (2012)


Terrence Higgins is one of the first people in the United Kingdom to die of AIDS-related causes. His friends create the Terrence Higgins Trust in his honor. Today, it’s the leading HIV and AIDS charity in the U.K. (1982)

Ryan White speaks before 8,400 teachers at the National Education Association convention in New Orleans. (1988)




Justin B. Terry-Smith starts taking HIV medication. (2008)



ACT UP protests for an end to the exclusion of HIV-positive prisoners from the family reunion program. (1991)

Roche pharmaceuticals alerts the community that it is terminating its in-house research for new HIV drugs by sending an email to HIV treatment activists. (2008)

Michael Johnson, a onetime college wrestler originally sentenced to 30 years for HIV nondisclosure, is released on parole from a Missouri prison. (2019)


A class action suit is filed on HIV-positive prisoners’ behalf by Prisoners Legal Services. (1991)

Barton Lidicé Beneš’ lover, Howard Meyer, dies of AIDS-related complications. (1989)


The XV International AIDS Conference begins in Bangkok, Thailand. (2004)


FDA approves Atripla a combination of efavirenz, emtricitabine, and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate. (2006)


The National HIV/AIDS Strategy for the United States is first released by the Obama administration. (2010)

Results from two studies of pre-Exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) provide evidence that antiretroviral drugs can prevent HIV transmission. (2011)

Timothy DuWhite


Timothy DuWhite, a writer, performer and poet living with HIV, premieres his performance piece Neptune at Dixon Place in New York City. (2018)


With the signing of HB20-1061, Colorado becomes the first state to allow pharmacists to prescribe pre- and post-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP and PEP) to prevent HIV. (2020)


Tongues Untied, the film by Marlon Riggs which explores issues facing Black gay men by blending documentary footage with poetry, premieres at Outfest in Los Angeles. (1989)

Elizabeth Glaser and Bob Hattoy are the first people living with HIV to speak at the Democratic National Convention. (1992)




Doris Day and Rock Hudson

Rock Hudson appearance at a press conference on Doris Day’s ranch in Carmel, California, became international news due to his gaunt and frail appearance and slurred speech. It was rumored that Hudson had AIDS. (1985)

Marlon Riggs’s award-winning documentary Tongues Untied about issues facing Black gay men airs on the PBS series P.O.V. Attacked for its graphic material, many local stations choose not to air it during prime time. (1991)

The Food and Drug Administration announces the approval of Truvada as pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP). (2012)

Let's Stop HIV Together - Regan

Let’s Stop HIV Together - Regan

The Department of Health and Human Services and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention launch the national HIV awareness campaign “Let’s Stop HIV Together,” which aims to combat the stigma and complacency fueling the HIV epidemic in the United States. The campaign includes two POZ editors, Regan Hofmann and Oriol R. Gutierrez Jr. (2012)

Merce a comedy series

Courtesy of Charles Sanchez

The musical comedy web series Merce, starring Charles Sanchez as a gay man living with HIV in New York City, debuts online. (2015)


During a state visit to London, Princess Diana escorts First Lady Barbara Bush on a tour of the AIDS ward at Middlesex Hospital. (1991)

Fire in the Belly: The Life and Times of David Wojnarowicz by Cynthia Carr is published. (2012)

Sir Elton John’s book Love Is the Cure: On Life, Loss, and the End of AIDS is released. The proceeds from sales of the book benefit the Elton John AIDS Foundation. (2012)

Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 is shot down while flying over eastern Ukraine, killing everyone aboard, including six prominent scientists and AIDS activists on their way to the 20th International AIDS Conference in Melbourne. (2014)


A group of minority leaders meets with U.S. Surgeon General C. Everett Koop, MD, to discuss concerns about HIV/AIDS in communities of color. The meeting marks the unofficial founding of the National Minority AIDS Council. (1986)

Joel D. Weisman, MD, one of the first physicians to detect the AIDS epidemic in the United States, dies at age 66. (2009)


President Bill Clinton’s administration announces the “Leadership and Investment in Fighting an Epidemic” (LIFE) initiative to address the global epidemic, which leads to increased funding. (1999)

Activist and POZ columnist Stephen Gendin dies of AIDS-related complications at age 34 in New York City. (2000)


Televangelist, talk show host and AIDS pioneer Tammy Faye Messner dies of lung cancer at age 65. The former wife of famed televangelist Jim Bakker, Messner was one of the first Christian television personalities to embrace people living with HIV/AIDS, urging viewers to pray for them. (2007)

The 20th International AIDS Conference (“Stepping Up the Pace”) kicks off in Melbourne. (2014)



The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends restrictions on the practice of HIV-positive health care workers. Congress goes on to enact a law requiring states to adopt the CDC restrictions or to develop and adopt their own. (1991)

Prevention Access Campaign, a coalition of activists, community members and scientists, launches the Undetectable Equals Untransmittable (U=U) movement. (2016)


Tim Greathouse art

Tim Greathouse, “David Wojnarowicz, Artist,” 1983, modern gelatin silver print, 14“ by 11”Courtesy of Daniel Cooney Fine Art

Artist and activist David Wojnarowicz dies at age 37. (1992)

The AIDS Memorial Quilt displayed on the National Mall in 2012Oriol Gutierrez

The AIDS Memorial Quilt is displayed in its entirety for the first time since 1996, during the 19th International AIDS Conference in Washington, DC. (2012)


The U.S. Food and Drug Administration announces that small quantities of unapproved drugs can be imported for people with life-threatening illnesses, including HIV/AIDS. (1988)

Former President Bill Clinton delivers the keynote address at the 20th International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2014) in Melbourne. (2014)


Performance artist and photographer Mark Morrisroe dies of AIDS-related causes at age 30 in Jersey City, New Jersey. (1989)

ReMixed Messages exhibition presented by Visual AIDS opens at Fathom Gallery, DC. (2012)


San Francisco General Hospital opens Ward 5B, the first dedicated in-patient AIDS ward in the United States. Within days, all of its 12 beds are occupied. (1983)

SisterLove, Inc., begins as a volunteer group of women interested in educating people in Atlanta, and especially women, about HIV prevention, self-help and safer sex techniques. (1989)

A large international study finds evidence that people taking HIV treatment can now expect to live into their 60s and beyond. (2008)

American fashion designer and longtime AIDS activist Kenneth Cole launches the End AIDS Coalition, a collaborative effort aimed at ending the AIDS epidemic by 2030 and uniting leaders spanning fields such as science, policy, religion and activism. (2017)


The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is signed into law by President George H.W. Bush. The ADA prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities, including people living with HIV/AIDS. (1990)

Rapper Nicki Minaj and pop star Ricky Martin in MAC AIDS Fund’s Viva Glam campaign

Rapper Nicki Minaj and pop star Ricky Martin in MAC AIDS Fund’s Viva Glam campaign

Rapper Nicki Minaj and pop star Ricky Martin are announced as the latest spokespeople for the MAC AIDS Fund’s Viva Glam campaign. Proceeds from the sale of the Viva Glam lipstick go toward fighting HIV and AIDS. (2011)


The term AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome) is proposed to replace GRID (gay-related immune deficiency). (1982)

Luna Luis Ortiz has sex for the first time and becomes HIV positive. (1986).

Philadelphia Mayor Ed Rendell formally authorizes Prevention Point Philadelphia, a syringe exchange program that had been operating underground. (1992)

Chicago’s AIDSCare, an organization serving people living with HIV who are experiencing homelessness, opens the first of five buildings on its “care campus”—a one-stop housing, health care and social mecca. (2004)

Françoise Barré-Sinoussi, a French virologist who was awarded the 2008 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for her role in the discovery of HIV in 1983, becomes the new president of the International AIDS Society. (2012)

The 10th annual Kiehl’s LifeRide—a fundraising motorcycle road trip spanning four days and multiple cities—concludes in Los Angeles, having raised $100,000 to support cure research at amfAR, The Foundation for AIDS Research. (2019)


AIDS Project Los Angeles holds the world’s first AIDS Walk. (1985)

The documentary Bad Blood: A Cautionary Tale, which chronicles the use of contaminated hemophilia blood products, premieres in New York City. (2010)

Visual AIDS holds its first annual Last Address Tribute Walk. The walking tour honors the last address of artists lost to AIDS-related illness as well as other cultural sites of the HIV/AIDS epidemic. (2013)



David Wojnarowicz’s political funeral procession takes place in New York City. (1992)

Quist, a mobile app that provides daily bite-sized tidbits of important moments in LGBTQ history—including info about HIV— launches worldwide. (2013)


The White House launches the National HIV/AIDS Strategy: Updated to 2020. It reflects scientific advances, transformations in health care access and a renewed emphasis on key populations, geographic areas and practices necessary to end the domestic HIV epidemic. (2015)


President George W. Bush signs legislation reauthorizing the U.S.  President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) for an additional five years for up to $48 billion. The bill contains a rider that lifts the blanket ban on HIV-positive travelers to the United States and gives the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services the authority to admit people living with HIV/AIDS on a case-by-case basis. (2008)

About the Artwork 

Frederick Weston, Sparkling Clean Toilet, 1999, Mixed media collage

Sparkling Clean Toilet speaks to my feelings and concerns about being HIV+.  Am I defying death each day living with the virus, or am I losing my “sparkle?”  If I’m infected, does that mean that I am “unclean?”  Am I spending much of my time in the bathroom on the toilet because of the side effects of the medications, or because the virus is doing a number on my gut?

—Frederick Weston

Founded in 1988, Visual AIDS is the only contemporary arts organization fully committed to raising AIDS awareness and creating dialogue around HIV issues today, by producing and presenting visual art projects, exhibitions, public forums and publications—while assisting artists living with HIV/AIDS. Visual AIDS is committed to preserving and honoring the work of artists with HIV/AIDS and the artistic contributions of the AIDS movement.