This is an especially critical time in the effort to end AIDS. Even without a cure, we currently have the necessary prevention and treatment methods in hand to achieve an AIDS-free generation. The Elton John AIDS Foundation (EJAF) is helping to lead the way, and our work has never been more urgently needed.
The challenges are clear. Around the world, stigma and discrimination against people and populations most severely affected by the epidemic still create tremendous roadblocks to the effective distribution of urgently needed HIV prevention and treatment programs. We see this in the continued stigma and violence targeted against LGBTQ people (particularly transgender individuals), racial and ethnic minorities, women, people who use drugs, and prisoners. We see it in the lack of programs for homeless and abandoned young people. We see it in the enormous gaps that exist between the rich and poor in almost every nation, creating tremendous economic disadvantages that stifle opportunities for education, healthcare, and economic development.
Since 1992, EJAF has raised more than $432 million to help end the AIDS epidemic in our lifetime, and the generous support we have received over the years from artists, galleries, and collectors have played a big part in this success. With the help of friends like you,
we’re continuing to expand our investments in HIV-related programs, services, and advocacy to address the threat of HIV/AIDS in the Southern U.S. We have become one of the largest nonprofit funders of syringe exchange and harm reduction programs in the U.S. to help end injection-related HIV transmissions. In the face of the growing opioid crisis in America, our syringe exchange funding has become more important than ever. And we’re launching a significant initiative to address the health, rights, and HIV-related needs of transgender individuals and gay and bisexual men.
We hope all of the collectors participating in this sale today, whether in person or online, will respond to the urgency of our work by bidding generously on these wonderful pieces. Please know that, by participating in this wonderful sale, you are standing with us against all of the forces that keep the AIDS epidemic going.
I am profoundly grateful to all of the wonderful artists who donated their amazing work to this special charity sale: Liam Gillick, Louise Lawler, Glenn Ligon, Liu Wei, and Kehinde Wiley.
I would also like to thank the following galleries and companies for their generosity in helping to make this special benefit sale possible: Casey Kaplan, Lehmann Maupin, Metro Pictures. And I cannot begin to express how fabulous the entire team at Christie’s has been in helping us to organize and implement this special project. They have been just unbelievably helpful and enthusiastic.
At EJAF, we believe every individual deserves dignity, respect, and unfettered access to accurate information, prevention methods, treatment, medical care, support services, and advocacy no matter who they are, where they live, what they believe, what they do, or who they love. Across the United States and around the world, EJAF grants enable countless community-based organizations to improve and protect the health and lives of millions of people every day. With your help, we CAN end AIDS—together!
Sir Elton John
Elton John AIDS Foundation