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2011/109/74 Quilt, Australian AIDS Memorial Quilt panel, various makers and places of manufacture, Australia, c. 1996. Click to enlarge.

Australian AIDS Memorial Quilt

Made c.1996

The Australian AIDS Memorial Quilt, of which this multi-panel quilt forms a part, is an evocative record of those who were lost to HIV, many of them in their 20s and 30s. The visual diversity of the panels is marked, capturing as they do the character and individuality of the person who died. In the 1980s and 1990s, at the onset of AIDS and in the following decade, societal attitudes were often homophobic. The Quilt records memories of those vibrant young people who faced their death in times of...


Object No.


Object Statement

Quilt, Australian AIDS Memorial Quilt panel, various makers and places of manufacture, Australia, c. 1996

Physical Description

The quilt is rectangular shape, constructed with ten joined panels, backed with calico and edged with canvas. The quilt block includes panels, 'Stanford House'; 'Positive Heterosexuals'; 'FPNSW' (Family Planning NSW); 'Multicultural HIV&AIDS Service'; 'WHOS HIV AIDS'; 'Cell Block Youth Health & Arts Service'; 'Health Promotion Unit'; 'Gender Centre'; 'Community HIV Team'; and 'Remembering Friends, Family and Partners in the Central Sydney Area'..

Australian AIDS Memorial Quilt project Block Number 117



3700 mm


3625 mm


10 mm



This panel was created as part of the Australian AIDS Memorial Quilt Project, which was founded in September 1988 by Andrew Carter OAM and Richard Johnson in Sydney. It was formally launched on World AIDS Day, 1 December 1988 by Ms Ita Buttrose. The founding 35 memorial panels were displayed that day in Sydney with visiting panels from the American Names Project.

Australian traveller Andrew Carter saw the American Quilt during its 1988 US National Tour, and upon his return home he was inspired to found the Australian Quilt with Richard Johnson. Andrew Carter was later awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia in recognition of this work. The Australian Quilt remains the largest outside the USA. Local groups of the Quilt now exist in States and Territories across Australia.

In 2007 the Quilt Project Sydney, which became the custodian of the Australian AIDS Memorial Quilt in 2000 offered the Quilt to the Powerhouse Museum for acquisition into the collection. A lengthy collaborative process ensued, in order to ensure that both the families of those commemorated and the makers of the quilts were in agreement with this proposal. At the same time, photography and documentation of the quilts, together with purpose-designed storage were carried out.


Credit Line

Gift of the Quilt Project Sydney, 2011

Acquisition Date

2 December 2011

Cite this Object


Australian AIDS Memorial Quilt 2016, Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, accessed 18 January 2019, <>


{{cite web |url= |title=Australian AIDS Memorial Quilt |author=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences |access-date=18 January 2019 |publisher=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, Australia}}


This object record is currently incomplete. Other information may exist in a non-digital form. The Museum continues to update and add new research to collection records.

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