Mobile Masterpieces: The History of BMW's Art Cars

1986 BMW 635 CSi by Robert Rauschenberg

BMW Art Car # 6 - 1986 635 CSi by Robert Rauschenberg

American artist Robert Rauschenberg was also given a 635 CSi to decorate in 1986, but his project couldn’t have been any more different than Fuchs’ 6 Series -- or any other Art Car, for that matter. The first five examples were all hand-painted, but Rauschenberg used photographic methods to transfer images -- mostly of classical art pieces -- to the car’s sheetmetal.

“I think mobile museums would be a good idea,” said Rauschenberg. “This car is my fulfillment of my dream.”

1986 BMW 635 CSi by Robert Rauschenberg

To that end, Rauschenberg crafted a veritable collage of classical artworks, including Bronzino’s “Portrait of a Young Man” and Ingres’ “Odalisque.” Unfortunately for Rauschenberg, his mobile museum never moved very often, and ironically spent most of its life within conventional, fixed museums.

Rauschenberg was so inspired by his Art Car that he ultimately created a new series of works dubbed “Beamer,” which were also made from transparent films applied to enameled aluminum.

soupedupmoe
Interesting tradition from BNW. my favorite is the 92 3-series(#13), but the old flame motif in the 82 (#3) is nicely done too. The design in #15 must have been thought up the night before. interesting article.
gep10
Very well written and researched article!!
carmom
Great article!! I never thought of cars as art but this discussion helped me to appreciate what these artists did. Very cool!

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