RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C., Oct. 1, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — ViiV Healthcare announces its new weekly podcast Being Seen, an in-depth exploration of the role culture plays in resolving how we see ourselves and how we are seen by others. Hosted and narrated by Darnell Moore, award-winning writer and activist, the first season explores current cultural representations of the queer and gay Black male experience and the impact on their lives and society. Being Seen is available October 6th wherever you get your podcasts and at www.beingseenpodcast.com.
Through conversations with leading artists, writers, activists, entertainers, and community leaders including; writer, director, and producer Lee Daniels and Ben Cory Jones; Samira Nasr, Editor-in-Chief at Harper’s Bazaar, and activist, writer, George M. Johnson, ViiV Healthcare hopes Being Seen encourages the creation of more accurate cultural portrayals of the queer and gay Black male experience in order to reduce stigma and change perception – impacting everything from HIV to institutional inequality.
“There is nothing else like Being Seen in the podcast universe for Black gay and queer men – it’s a safe space and platform for them to express themselves, share their experiences, and bare their souls and identities freely and uncensored,” said Marc Meachem, head of US External Affairs for ViiV Healthcare. “We think it will reduce stigma and bring hope to Black gay and queer men who may find their story in the stories being shared on the podcast and know they are not alone, they are being seen – and we hope it encourages them to write or tell their own story even if it’s just for themselves.”
The project has been enriched and informed by creative consultants and partners Emil Wilbekin founder of Native Son; DaShawn Usher founder of MOBI; Emmy winning producer Darius Brown; Photographers Gioncarlo Valentine and Texas Isaiah – both of whom served as curators for Being Seen photography. As well as the incredible group of illustrators and photographers who either licensed work or created original work to help bring the project to life visually and through sound. Theme music for the podcast is Colouour by Moses Sumney.
“Being Seen podcast is another medium through which the lives of Black queer and trans men are uplifted and centered. Our contributions to culture matter. The work that so many of us do on behalf Black people matters” said Darnell Moore. “And we have to share our stories, as different and complex as they may be, to push back against the erasure of our work and voices. I hope that audiences end every episode a bit more committed to co-creating a world where the lives of all Black people matter.”
ViiV’s evolving commitments to communities in the US most disproportionately impacted by HIV, and the reality of current times have motivated support of this new cultural collaboration.
“Our sole focus on HIV and the HIV community for more than 10 years has given ViiV clear insights into the importance of listening and hearing the community – and we are committed to amplifying those voices through our work” said Lynn Baxter, Head of North America, ViiV Healthcare. “Being Seen brings awareness to the impact of stigma on every aspect of these individual’s lives and spotlights the obligation everyone has to end discrimination against marginalized communities, including people living with HIV.”
Being Seen expands on the insights and findings from landmark ethnographic research conducted by ViiV Healthcare, exploring the lives of Black gay men in Baltimore, Maryland, and Jackson, Mississippi. This research uncovered that these men wanted the freedom to create their own experiences and live without labels. It also gave life to the ground-breaking experiential theater piece As Much As I Can, created and produced by Harley & Co and presented by ViiV Healthcare.
Being Seen is produced by Harley & Co. and Darnell Moore and created in partnership with ViiV Healthcare.
About Darnell Moore – Being Seen host and producer
Darnell L. Moore is an award-winning writer, activist, organizer, and author of No Ashes in the Fire: Coming of Age Black and Free in America. He is Director of Inclusion Strategy for Content & Marketing at Netflix, editor-at-large at CASSIUS and co-managing editor at The Feminist Wire. A prolific writer, Darnell has been published in various media outlets including MSNBC, The Guardian, Huffington Post, EBONY, The Root, The Advocate, OUT Magazine, VICE and others, as well as numerous academic journals. He received the Humanitarian Award from the American Conference on Diversity for his LGBTQ advocacy and has been named among EBONY Magazine’s Power 100, Time Out New York’s Eight LGBT Influencers, The Root 100, and Planned Parenthood’s Top 99 Dream Keepers.
About Harley & Co – Being Seen Producer
Harley & Co. is a New York based creative studio that produces award-winning multi-platform social justice and culture projects such as activist experiential theater, “As Much As I Can.” Their work has won numerous awards including Cannes Lions, AD&D, Shorty for Social Good and most recently, Fast Company’s World Changing Ideas. Harley & Co. has been featured in the NYTimes, Teen Vogue, NBC, ABC and Bloomberg, among others, for their unique creative design and approach.
About ViiV Healthcare
ViiV Healthcare is the only pharmaceutical company solely focused on combating, preventing, and ultimately curing HIV and AIDS. We exist to make sure no one living with HIV and AIDS is left behind, and we are 100% dedicated to addressing the challenges of the HIV epidemic. Our portfolio ambition is to make HIV a smaller part of people lives. Beyond developing innovative medicines, ViiV Healthcare works with communities to address enduring disparities in HIV care and outcomes.
ViiV Healthcare is a global specialist HIV company established in November 2009 by GlaxoSmithKline (LSE: GSK) and Pfizer (NYSE: PFE) dedicated to delivering advances in treatment and care for people living with HIV and for people who are at risk of becoming infected with HIV. Shionogi joined in October 2012. The company’s aim is to take a deeper and broader interest in HIV/AIDS than any company has done before and take a new approach to deliver effective and innovative medicines for HIV treatment and prevention, as well as support communities affected by HIV.
For more information on the company, its management, portfolio, pipeline and commitment, please visit https://viivhealthcare.com/en-gb/.
GSK is a science-led global healthcare company with a special purpose: to help people do more, feel better, live longer. For further information please visit www.gsk.com.
Cautionary statement regarding forward-looking statements
GSK cautions investors that any forward-looking statements or projections made by GSK, including those made in this announcement, are subject to risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from those projected. Such factors include, but are not limited to, those described under Item 3.D “Risk Factors” in the company’s Annual Report on Form 20-F for 2019 and as set out in GSK’s Principal risks and uncertainties section of the Q2 Results and any impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
SOURCE ViiV Healthcare