Op 30 november beleefde de BMW Art Car van John Baldessari zijn wereldpremière tijdens Art Basel Miami Beach in aanwezigheid van de kunstenaar zelf samen met Ludwig Willisch, President en CEO van BMW van Noord-Amerika, en Jens Marquardt, directeur van BMW Motorsport. Zoals het de 40-jarige traditie van de BMW Art Cars betaamt, zal Baldessari’s M6 GTLM zich bewijzen op het circuit, tijdens de Rolex 24 op Daytona op 28 en 29 januari 2017.

John Baldessari BMW M6 GTLM Art Car #19.
John Baldessari BMW M6 GTLM Art Car #19.

BMW Art Car #19 by John Baldessari
“I have done only one work in my life involving a car before, and that was an image of a car. So for the BMW Art Car project, I entered uncharted territory, not just in terms of the subject, but also moving from two- to three-dimensional art. A challenge I did enjoy! The ideas all came at once: for instance, the red dot on the roof, so you can see it from above, FAST on one side and a picture of the car on the other side. I like the ambiguity, having two-dimension and three-dimension at the same time. Considering the car as an icon of contemporary life, my concept turned out playfully satirical, but it also highlights some of the trademark ideas that I use. So you can say, the BMW Art Car is definitely a typical Baldessari and the fastest artwork I ever created!” – John Baldessari

John Baldessari BMW M6 GTLM Art Car #19.

John Baldessari BMW M6 GTLM Art Car #19.

John Baldessari BMW M6 GTLM Art Car #19.

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 unique manner. As a committed minimalist, he worked with the colours red, yellow, blue and green and with his monochrome dots, he left his familiar colourful marks on the M6 GTLM as well. Baldessari’s ironic play on the multi-dimensionality of the race car as an art object is most obvious in the graphic reflection of the car in profile. And with “FAST” as a central typographic element the artist boldly transports the power of the BMW Art Car to its outside and makes it visually accessible for the viewers both at the race track and the museum.

John Baldessari spearheaded and oversaw the design of the 19th BMW Art Car, which was executed with the help of a team of BMW engineers in early November at the BMW Body & Paint Training Center West in Oxnard, California.

The BMW M6 GTLM on the race track
In January 2016, the BMW M6 GTLM made its debut on the Daytona International Speedway. It passed its first test with flying colours and was ranked fifth. The 19th BMW Art Car will be put to the test at this very same site and compete at the legendary 24 Hours of Daytona from January 28 to 29, 2017. Run by BMW Team RLL, the car will be entered in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship (IWSC). Since 2009, the BMW Team RLL together with BMW Motorsport North America has won five titles and twelve victories. And the first season of the BMW M6 GTLM also was successful with a total of three podium finishes in Sebring, Watkins Glen and Road America. This track record is to be continued in 2017. Bill Auberlen (US), Alexander Sims (GB), Augusto Farfus (BR) and Bruno Spengler (CA) will take turns in driving the BMW Art Car.

Painting of John Baldessari Art Car.

Painting of John Baldessari Art Car.
Painting of John Baldessari Art Car.

Painting of John Baldessari Art Car.

Jens Marquardt, BMW Motorsport Director, said, “It will be a great honour for us to present the 19th BMW Art Car on the race track – and especially to bring it to an event steeped in tradition such as the 24 Hours of Daytona. The design of this BMW M6 GTLM is absolutely unique. We will give our very best to ensure that this rolling work of art will not only provide a visual highlight but also be successful on the track.”
World premiere at Art Basel in Miami Beach
As a global partner of Art Basel, BMW Group has been presenting the legendary BMW Art Cars at the shows in Miami Beach and Hong Kong for many years. After displaying many of the “rolling sculptures”, including the works by Jeff Koons, Roy Lichtenstein and Robert Rauschenberg in the Botanical Garden of Miami Beach, BMW continues its tradition this year and uses this major platform to present the 19th BMW Art Car by John Baldessari to a global audience for the very first time.

This year’s edition marks the 15th anniversary of Art Basel in Miami Beach, Florida. From December 1 to 4, 2016, more than 200 leading galleries from North America, Europe, Latin America, Asia and Africa will present over 4,000 artists of the 20th and 21st century. As in previous years, BMW will once again provide the official VIP shuttle service for the guests of the fair. Its fleet of vehicles will provide an ideal connection between the fair and various satellite events. As part of Art Basel in Miami Beach 2016, the next round of selections for the BMW Art Journey will also be held – a global initiative of Art Basel and BMW to support emerging artist worldwide. Previous winners include Samson Young, Henning Fehr & Philipp Rühr and Abigail Reynolds.