Not a modern art fan? BMW’s functional masterpieces might just move you

Have you ever stood idly in an art gallery, gazing upon some esoteric work and wondered to yourself, ‘what the hell does this mean?’

If you have, you’re not alone. Sometimes art speaks to you, sometimes it’s pretty to look at, and other times it’s just some paint on a canvas.

Because you’re reading this right now, BMW’s Art Cars might just be the works to move you. Two standouts from the German automaker’s collection, a 1977 320i by Roy Lichtenstein and a 1989 M3 by Michael Jagamara Nelson, are scheduled to be displayed at the 2014 Art Besel in Miami beach this December.

Lichtenstein’s 320i started with the wide-bodied, Group 5 racing version, with a vibrant color scheme inspired by the car’s natural habitat.

“I wanted the lines I painted to be a depiction the road showing the car where to go,” said the late American pop artist. “The design also shows the countryside through which the car has travelled. One could call it an enumeration of everything a car experiences – only that this car reflects all of these things before actually having been on a road.”

BMW M3 Art Car

Australian painter Michael Jagamara Nelson’s 1989 M3 painting is a boldly styled representation of his native countryside, although there isn’t much nostalgic sentiment in his description of it.

“A car is a landscape as it would be seen from a plane – I have included water, the kangaroo and the opossum,” he said.

The great thing about Nelson’s piece is because of the abstract element of the Aborigine shapes, one onlooker could see something completely different than the next. The artist describes the M3 as an aerial amalgamation of his home country, but from some angles, it looks like a delicate collection of autumn leaves.

BMW also announced a new collaborative art initiative with Art Basel. The two companies hope to support emerging independent artists with the project, and will officially reveal the details on December 3rd in Miami.

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