The Trevor Wayne Pop Art Store and Gallery Supports Free Self HIV Testing
by Robert Hopwood
Artist Trevor Wayne wants more people to get tested for HIV, and he is using his popular storefront to make an impact.
The Palm Springs artist has created four pieces of art to promote DAP Health’s free self HIV tests.
The test kits can be mailed or picked up in person at the health center. The tests are a convenient, confidential way for people to determine their HIV status.
“I think everyone should get tested because it’s the best way of stopping the spread of HIV,” Wayne says. “It’s also really important to know if you have any health issues because managing them early on will make things much easier.”
Wayne’s artwork, which features doll heads and smiles, carries a simple message: “Free self HIV test mailed to you!”
DAP Health is using Wayne’s art to promote the test kits on bus shelters and through dating services, online ad networks, social media and email.
“What we want to do is bring more awareness to (the tests) because as of now, 49% of the Coachella Valley has not been tested,” Wayne says.
DAP Health started its free self HIV test program in August 2020.
Since then, they have sent out more than 100 kits a month, says C.J. Tobe, DAP Health’s director of Community Health.
DAP Health follows up with everyone who requests a kit and provides counseling, Tobe says. They also connect people with resources, if needed.
Having an artist like Wayne portray self-testing will help combat the stigma around HIV, Tobe says.
“It’s really going to be able to get the message out there about knowing your status,” he said.
Wayne’s artwork features pop culture themes and items, from horror movies to entertainment icons.
“I pretty much just do what I find funny or amusing in the minute and pretty much hope that people get it,” he says.
Wayne, whose art is sold in more than 120 stores, moved from Los Angeles to Palm Springs in 2017. In February 2020 he opened Pop Art! along Palm Canyon Drive.
He says it’s an honor to be asked to create artwork for DAP Health.
“It makes me feel like I’m a part of the community,” Wayne says. “It’s kind of nice that they trust my art to talk about such a subject in a way that makes it more approachable.”