2017 BMW M6 GT3 BMW Art Car reloaded: Chinese multimedia artist Cao Fei takes the series into the 21st Century by going digital. World Premiere of the latest BMW Art Car on May 31 at the Minsheng Art Museum in Beijing. The BMW M6 GT3 Art Car will race at the FIA GT World Cup in […]
The BMW Art Car Collection
Since 1975, a total of 19 international artists have been creating BMW Art Cars on the basis of contemporary BMW automobiles. The collection was inaugurated when French race car driver and art aficionado Hervé Poulain in collaboration with the then current BMW Motorsport Director Jochen Neerpasch asked his artist friend Alexander Calder to design a car.
The result was a BMW 3.0 CSL, which in 1975 was raced at the 24 Hours of Le Mans and became an instant favorite with the spectators: the BMW Art Car Collection was born. BMW Art Cars are not only on display in their home, BMW’s museum in Munich, they also travel internationally to exhibitions and museums in Asia, Europe and North America.
In November 2015, BMW Group announced two artists to create the next BMW Art Cars at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. In addition to American artist John Baldessari, multimedia artist Cao Fei, one of China’s most important contemporary artists who just received the CAA Artist of the Year award and had a solo show at MoMA PS1 in 2016, is currently designing another vehicle for this legendary collection.
2016 BMW M6 GTLM For the 19th BMW Art Car, John Baldessari as the legend of an entire LA art scene drew on his famous artistic trademarks. Designing the car, this American artist turned to well-known stylistic devices and created an iconic work which unites his creative practices of the past fifty years in a […]
2010 BMW M3 GT2 This BMW M3 GT2 was aesthetically reworked by the US artist Jeff Koons and is the latest model in the BMW Art Cars series. It was unveiled to the world at the Centre Pompidou in Paris in June 2010 – to great acclaim! The media and art magazines from all over […]
2007 BMW H2R Project How are the automobile industry and global warming related? The Danish artist Olafur Eliasson confronted a number of critical issues in generating his Art Car design. The bodywork of the BMW H2R, a hydrogen-powered car used to set speed records while also attempting to develop forward-thinking environmental friendliness, served as a […]
1999 BMW V12 LMR Protect me from what I want. This and other provocative messages glare at the beholder from the otherwise white bodywork of the 15th Art Car. Instead of chrome, a light and shiny foil was used for the lettering to avoid increasing the weight of the BMW V12 LMR. The twelve cylinder […]
1995 BMW 850 CSi On April 20, 1995 the British born artist David Hockney placed his signature on the BMW 850CSi marking the completion of the 14th Art Car and several months of hard work. The artist aimed to portray the very innermost depths of the car. The result was an automobile whose contents were […]
1992 BMW 3-Series Racing Prototype Italian born painter Sandro Chia was contracted to paint a touring racing car prototype from the BMW 3 series. The silhouettes and portraits on the paintwork challenge the observer to consider looking at himself in the mirror. “A car is a coveted object in our society.” Chia explains that, as […]
1991 BMW 525i The 12th Art Car was the first to have been signed by a woman. This is not the only fact that makes this BMW 525i so special. The South African artist Esther Mahlangu coated the bodywork of the car with the bright colors and clearly distinguishable ornamental shapes typical of her ethnic […]
1991 BMW Z1 There is a total of 8,000 BMW Z1s all over the world, but only one like this. German artist A.R. Penck made sure of that by transforming this particular vehicle into a unique work of art. This bright red Art Car has been adorned with various symbols and images including the artist’s […]
1990 BMW 730i It’s a shame this Art Car can’t be seen out on the streets. How different the world would look with colourful cars! A question the Spanish artist, César Manrique probably asked himself. He certainly believed that, as everyday objects, cars play an essential role in the appearance of our surroundings. As well […]
1990 BMW 535i The Japanese artist, Matazo Kayama, was presented with a six cylinder in-line engine, 211 bhp BMW 535i to serve as a fresh canvas for his creation. He based his Art Car design on a contract piece done for Tokyo National Museum of Arts. However, by using airbrush techniques he was able to […]
1989 BMW M3 Group A Race Version What do BMW Art Cars 7 and 8 have in common? Both were created using the same model – a BMW M3 racing car – and both were adorned with the work of Australian artists. Anyone looking for visual similarities will do so in vain, as these contradictory […]
1989 BMW M3 Group A Race Version All good things take time. In just seven days the Australian artist Michael Jagamara Nelson transformed a black BMW M3 into a masterpiece of Papunya art. Nelson learned this ancient method of painting from his grandfather and was awarded the national prize for aboriginal art. Papunya artists paint […]
1986 BMW 635 CSi “Drivable museums would be great. This car is a dream come true for me,” gushed Rauschenberg after the presentation of his Art Car in New York. This BMW 635CSi was the sixth Art Car, yet was the first to have its bodywork decorated with photographic material. The right side bears the […]
1982 BMW 635 CSi This car represents two firsts: This was the first Art Car to be created using a serial production BMW and the first Art Car to be enhanced by a European artist, namely by the Vienna art professor, Ernst Fuchs. For the “Art as illustration – illustration as art” exhibition Fuchs was […]
1979 BMW M1 Group 4 Race Version This Art Car is one of the highlights of the collection of artworks on wheels. No lesser person than Andy Warhol immortalized himself in this M1. He even took responsibility for transferring the smaller scale design to the actual bodywork himself with only the aid of his assistant. […]
1977 BMW 320i Group 5 Race Version Car three by Roy Lichtenstein is one of the most popular of all the Art Cars; the BMW 320 Group 5. The artist had this to say on the fruit of his labors: “I invested as much thought and effort as possible.” Undeniably! The result of these efforts […]
1976 BMW 3.0 CSL In 1976 this BMW 3.0 CSL shot around the race circuit at 300 km/h at the Le Mans 24-hour race which is nothing out of the ordinary for a BMW race car. What did stand out was the fact that it was a high-speed BMW Art Car designed by Frank Stella. […]
1975 BMW 3.0 CSL The first time a BMW was transformed into a work of art was 1975. Alexander Calder was inspired by the French auctioneer and racing driver, Hervé Poulain, to produce the first ever BMW Art Car. The US artist only used primary colours and distributed them in broad swathes across the paintwork […]