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Forgotten Faces of AIDS is a long-term photographic project dedicated to increasing public awareness of the global impact of the HIV/AIDS epidemic and to raising funds for non-profit organizations providing HIV prevention and treatment in India.

The goal of the project is to create exhibits, lectures and publications as well as a website to be used for public, academic and corporate educational purposes in order to :

  • raise funds for non-profit organizations providing AIDS
  • prevention, education and treatment
  • bring attention to the increasing numbers and unique problems of AIDS orphans
  • alleviate some of the stigma and discrimination of people living with AIDS through use of positive images
  • increase public awareness in the Western world of the global impact of the AIDS epidemic

In 2005, I received an artist fellowship from the Global Arts Village in New Delhi to document stories of HIV/AIDS in India. That enabled me to photograph, over a four month period, projects of several non-profit organizations including those providing care for AIDS orphans; an MSM (men who have sex with men) support group; community outreach programs; pre-natal clinics focused on prevention of maternal-child transmission of HIV and treatment of HIV in the military.

Photographs taken at clinics, government hospitals and the AIDS research division of MGR Medical University in south India were exhibited in 4 large collages at the Fifth International AIDS Conference in Chennai. The MSM photographs, which reflect both human rights and gay rights issues, were exhibited in the San Francisco LGBT Center during gay pride month, June 2006. The AIDS orphans images have been exhibited in New Delhi, at the University of Dhaka, Bangladesh and at Allegheny College in Pennsylvania, coincident with World AIDS Day 2006. I participated in educational programs at both Allegheny and Geneseo (SUNY) for World AIDS Day 2006. An exhibition and presentation will be given in Berkeley, CA, for World Aids Day 2007.

It is my intention to continue and develop this project using my photographs for both educational and fund-raising purposes.

Presentations will be given at schools, corporations and churches in order to raise awareness of the impact of HIV/AIDS on local and global communities.

This website: will serve as both an educational and fundraising site for HIV/AIDS projects in India.

My project, Forgotten Faces of AIDS, is directed at both exposing and transforming the reality of HIV/AIDS in India, where the subject of AIDS is both controversial and stigmatizing. Telling the story over and over again with vivid images is essential if preventive measures are to be successful and life saving treatment made available to all. My photographs are part of the visual messages of AIDS which will make a difference in the lives of people in the rural villages and urban areas of India.


Donna M. Guenther, M. D.