A massive 18m tall condom will cover one of Sydney’s iconic landmarks for the next seven days as part of a new HIV prevention campaign commissioned by ACON – NSW’s lead agency for HIV prevention among gay men.
The giant hot pink condom will sheath the heritage-listed Hyde Park Obelisk, situated at the intersection of Elizabeth St and Bathurst St in the CBD. Running for a week from this Thursday, the installation aims to help raise awareness among gay men about how they can help end HIV transmission in NSW by 2020.
The installation has been executed by experiential agency, Revolution 360, and is the climax of the I’M ON safe sex education campaign. ACON has been promoting the I’M ON campaign for the last three weeks on the streets of Sydney and across gay-focused, mainstream and social media.
In addition to the towering condom, Revolution 360 has coordinated safe sex ambassadors to be on-site handing out free condoms and information about the health and social benefits of ‘staying safe’ to passers-by.
ACON CEO Nicolas Parkhill explained that while new drugs are starting to provide other means of protection against HIV, condoms remain central to the fight against HIV because they are still one of the most effective ways of preventing HIV transmission.
“The need for gay men to ‘stay safe’ by using condoms is at the core of NSW’s strategy for eliminating HIV transmission by the end of the decade. We won’t be able to achieve this goal unless gay men use condoms when they’re having high-risk sex with casual partners, particularly in situations where a partner’s HIV status isn’t known – it’s that simple.”
Sales manager for Revolution360 Michael Fishwick said the installation is an intriguing way to get the attention to promote a very important message.
“Working closely with ACON we wanted to deliver this positive but serious message with a touch of humour and humanity, to create interest, intrigue and talkability. This concept was inspired by guerrilla activity in Paris, but in Sydney we were fortunate enough able to collaborate closely with City of Sydney, Sydney Water and many others. It was very much a united team, working towards a common goal. ”