Twenty-five years ago, a group of strangers gathered in anempty storefront in San Francisco and powered up sewing machines. Looking for away to express their grief, they sewed together panel after panel, eachdedicated to loved ones lost to HIV/AIDS, and made a quilt. That small projecthas grown into the AIDS Memorial Quilt, which is managed by the NAMES ProjectFoundation.

The Quilt is now the largest piece of community folk art inthe world, made of 48,000 panels that take up 1.3 million square feet and weighin at 54 tons. It’s a historical witness of the epidemic that continues to growas new panels are added. By educating about HIV/AIDS, the Quilt also helps tofight stigma and discrimination.