BMW’s relationship with art has, and continues to be, transcendental—and we’ve thoroughly enjoyed admiring the assortment of one-off beautified bimmers from a plethora of creative visionaries over the decades. Back in 1975 the world bore witness to the first BMW Art Car: the physical manifestation of Alexander Calder’s artistic vision in the form of Hervé Poulain’s Le Mans 3.0CSL. The finished masterpiece was so influential that BMW founded the Art Car Collection, which now showcases nineteen international works of automotive art in exhibitions worldwide.
And now that illustrious roster is about to get one name longer.
BMW’s commitment to its Individual program has sparked a new era of unparalleled automotive art collaborations, the latest of which will be spearheaded by graffiti legend Futura. Leonard Hilton McGurr, once known as all-caps FUTURA and now going by just Futura, is a distinguished and influential street artist who rose to fame as a result of his abstract, contemporary take on New York subway art.
His hypnotizing, geometric patterns of concentric circles, paired with his vibrant color palettes, led him to become a leader in the graffiti-to-gallery movement of the early ’80s. Today, nearly 40 years later, Futura remains a pioneer in the industry, as both a critically-acclaimed artist and graphic designer.
Futura’s continued devotion to the ever-changing art community, along with his own affinity for the arts, prompted BMW to propose a collaboration involving the M2 Competition. The decision comes as part of BMW’s philosophy to continue “setting trends both in the high-performance vehicle sector and the art scene.” The artistic exploit will produce three hand-painted Futura Edition M2 Competition originals, along with the launch of a limited-edition series.
One of the three hand-painted originals will make its worldwide debut in Los Angeles on February 13–16 at the second Frieze Art Show being held at Paramount Pictures Studios in Hollywood. The Frieze Art Fair is the perfect stage for the M2’s debut, with performances, speeches, and an endless supply of contemporary art. For those who were not already convinced, the limited-edition M2 debut is sure to cement the future of high-performance vehicles as an art medium.
If you’re interested in getting behind the wheel of one of Futura’s automotive musings, you will have to register. The special-edition M2 Competition models designed by Futura will see a super-limited production run, warranting prospective buyers to register their name online for the opportunity to purchase one in June.
Regardless, the collaboration will most certainly prove to be monumental for both artist and brand, as Futura challenges himself with a new medium—and BMW with a new era of art for their collection.—Malia Murphy
[Photos courtesy BMW AG.]