Track Mentality: Jeff Koons for BMW

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Published April 7, 2010

PHOTO COURTESY BMW

 

 

In 1975, the French racecar driver Hervé Poulain commissioned his friend Alexander Calder to paint the BMW 3.0 CSL he was set to drive that year at the 24 Hours of Le Mans race in France. Though Poulain didn’t finish, 35 years later the Bavarian automaker who supplied his car is still following his lead. Yesterday in New York they introduced Jeff Koons‘s technicolor design for the 17th edition in their ever-intriguing Art Car series. For Koons, the performance of his #79 vehicle, which will be shown at the Centre Pompidou June 1—as Lichtenstein’s was in 1977—is just as important as the aesthetics. “This will be the first time since ’79, since the Warhol car,” that an art car has raced at Le Mans, hence the number, Koons told us after the press conference. “I’m thrilled by that and just wanted to take into account the pure aesthetics of physics and to try to create a car whose first function is to win the race. I hope it has a little intimidating effect to it, where it looks like a very fast car.”

READ THE FULL ARTICLE ON ART IN AMERICA.