BMW revived a tradition at this year's Le Mans 24 Hours with its elaborately designed “Art Car.” American artist Jeff Koons' take on the BMW M3 GT2 Art Car really caught the eye in France even though the car, driven by Dirk Werner, Dirk Muller and Andy Priaulx, had mechanical issues and had to retire early. Despite this disappointment, Koons (left) drew a positive conclusion from the event.
“This race has been a very invigorating experience,” declared Koons. “It's amazing to see the commitment of all the people involved. The fans sleep in tents and stay awake for far more than 24 hours to celebrate this event. This has me really going, as I understand that it is something truly special for all the people to be here. It's unfortunate that the BMW M3 GT2 Art Car had to retire early, but it's part of racing.
“Yes, I would have loved to see the team win, but it wasn't to be. I know how committed they are and how much precision and care they put into their work. I would love to give it another chance and have [the Art Car] compete again.”
Koons said the “power and dynamics” that were central to his paint scheme are a common theme in modern art. “There are many parallels,” he said. “Everything is a metaphor for human life. If we build machines, it's all metaphoric for our own bodies. These racecars are like gladiators out there. They are performing with full power and full impact.”
He noted, however, that watching his “canvas” out on the track was a unique experience.
“That was really interesting for me and obviously a part of it,” Koons related. “This project has felt so special to me, and working on it reminded me of human history. A history that you can trust the most is almost a biological narrative – it's our DNA, from the beginning of time to now. What people experience here is that life doesn't go so much through its physical form, but through the experience that is generated within people.”