New BMW Art Car to race in 24-hour classic
Artist Jeff Koons showed off his striking design concept for the next BMW Art Car in New York in early April—the seventeenth BMW Art Car since Alexander Calder painted the first one in 1975.
Calder’s bright paint scheme on a BMW 3.0CSL racing car helped raise the profile of BMW, which had just set up its North American headquarters in the U.S.
A year after Calder, New York artist Frank Stella patterned a BMW, and Roy Lichtenstein, Andy Warhol, and Robert Rauschenberg followed. The cars became emblems of pop art’s evolution—though not to everybody's taste.
BMW's Art Car program began with Alexander Calder's 3.0CSL in 1975.
Alexander Calder and driver Herve Poulain examine a model of teh first Art Car.
The artist usually sketches or models the design and BMW paints the car, although Andy Warhol brush-painted his M1 project himself, using his hands as well. Koons' project is an M3 GT2 race car, which will compete in the annual 24-hour endurance race at Le Mans. Andy Priaulx will join Dirk Müller and Dirk Werner in the Art Car three-man team, racing one of two BMWs in the race.—Paul Duchene