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BMW Art Car Collection

The ICA, in partnership with BMW, the Mayor of London and the London 2012 Festival, will take over a landmark car park in Shoreditch for two weeks for a unique exhibition of The BMW Art Car Collection.

It will be the first time the Collection will be on show in the UK, and forms part of the London 2012 Festival, a 12-week nationwide celebration bringing together leading artists from across the world with the very best from the UK.

The collection, initiated over 35 years ago, features BMW cars transformed by some of the world's leading artists including: Alexander Calder, Frank Stella, Roy Lichtenstein, Andy Warhol, Ernst Fuchs, Robert Rauschenberg, M.J Nelson, Ken Done, Matazo Kayama, Cesar Manrique, Jeff Koons, A.R Penck, Esher Mahlangu, Sandro Chia, Jenny Holzer and David Hockney.

Art Drive! The BMW Art Car Collection will show cars by 16 international artists over six floors in the NCP Car Park on Great Eastern Street in Shoreditch. The project, which brings together BMW's excellence in car design and the ICA's passion for and commitment to art, will be a one-off opportunity for art and design lovers as well as car enthusiasts.

The BMW Art Car Collection started when French racing driver and auctioneer Hervé Poulain invited his friend Alexander Calder to design a car that married artistic excellence to 'an already perfect object'. The end result was a racing car that would ultimately compete in the Le Mans 24-hour race in 1975.

Since then some of the greatest names in contemporary art have added to the collection creating a wide range of artistic interpretations. David Hockney's 1995 Art Car paints the inside of the car on the outside, revealing everything from internal engine parts to a dog in the back. Rauschenberg incorporates photographic transfers of Ingres paintings while Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein used the canvas of the car to portray the essence of speed. Well-known for its support for innovation and new talent across the contemporary arts, the ICA has sought out some exciting emerging names in design from the East End to help deliver this project, including Julia, Loop.pH and My Beautiful City.

Art Drive! presents an exciting opportunity to reach new and larger audiences, and the ICA hopes to take on further projects of this type in order to extend its reach into new spaces across the city.

To launch the project, the BMW Art Car by Jeff Koons was photographed in front of London's Tower Bridge.

Posted on 05.07.2012
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