“Paying tribute to the legacy of those we’ve lost; honoring those who’ve survived, and the organizations of change that were born; and providing links and access to existing programs around HIV/AIDS education.”  This is how STORIES: The AIDS Monument defines itself.

A field of 341 vertical strands, on a raised platform, between West Hollywood Park and San Vicente Boulevard, the Dan Towbin-designed monument has been more succinctly described by longtime champion, Sharon Stone, as “love.”

Now all of this is well and good; but before the nice people from the City of West Hollywood assume guardianship of the monument (not to mention donating the land and kicking-in $500,000; as part of West Hollywood Park’s $86 million reimagining), the onus is on STORIES’ foundation to raise the other $4.5 million.

Enter PHOTO17, a photo auction to benefit STORIES: The AIDS Monument; taking place at Milk Studios L.A., on Thursday, October 5th.

A posh evening affair, produced by nightlife impresario and film producer, Bryan Rabin; PHOTO17 comes on the heels of the successes found with PHOTO15 and PHOTO16.  This year, following a cocktail reception – where guests can partake of victuals by Love Catering, and specialty cocktails provided by Tequila Avión – the evening will jump into high gear, with a special, intimate performance by the 2008 recipient of GLAAD’s Stephen F. Kolzak Award, Rufus Wainwright; who, this December, will be celebrating the tenth anniversary of his fantastically ballsy, Grammy-nominated concert-album Rufus Does Judy at Carnegie Hall.

But it’s really about the photos, so here’s a very abridged list of some of the artists whose work will fall under the gavel, at the Paddle8-run auction: Bernard of Hollywood, Mathieu Bitton, Sylvie Blum, Gavin Bond, Walter Chin, Brad Elterman, Greg Gorman, Tim Hailand, Pamela Hansen, Dennis Hopper, Inez and Vinoodh, Markus Klinko, Julian Lennon, Antonio Lopez, Steven Lyon, Andrew MacPherson, Christopher Makos, Patrick McMullen, Rankin, Herb Ritts, Mick Rock, Matthew Rolston, Ed Ruscha, Albert Sanchez, Norman Seeff, Michael Shulman (yup, that’s me!), Nikki Sixx, Art Streiber, Mariano Vivanco, Ellen von Unwerth, Jeff Wall, Timothy White, and Paul Zone.

And, if you take a few moments, and check-out the slideshow (above), you’ll see a number of the photographs in the auction; with subjects ranging from the most famous of faces, to a pair of fierce French poodles.

In the words of PHOTO17 co-Chair Willie Maldonado (Founder/Partner, Milk Studios L.A.). “The untold loss and untold stories of the artists, models and fashion industry leaders cannot be measured. This is our way of bringing those stories to life, and to remember those people in an artistic way."

PHOTO17 | a Photo Auction to Benefit STORIES: The AIDS Monument
Milk Studios | Los Angeles
Thursday, October 5th

Click HERE for tickets and info
Click HERE to preview and bid on the auction

Get into it!

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