A few days after its unveiling in Paris, BMW’s 20th Art Car made its way to Italy for the prestigious Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este. Renowned artist Julie Mehretu and BMW M CEO Frank Van Meel presented the car to an enthusiastic audience. The next destination for this remarkable vehicle is the 24 Hours of Le Mans, where it will compete alongside a standard BMW M Hybrid V8. The stunning art car, showcased against the backdrop of the iconic Mosaic House, provided spectacular views for attendees.

Mehretu, an Ethiopian-born American artist celebrated for her large-scale abstract paintings, has infused her distinctive style into the car. She employed a mix of obscured photographs, dotted grids, neon-colored spray paint, and her signature gestural markings to create a captivating design.

For the BMW Art Car project, Mehretu was unanimously selected in 2018 by a jury of esteemed gallery and museum directors. The work commenced during the COVID-19 pandemic and reached completion just a few months ago. The creative process began in the digital realm, where Mehretu utilized advanced 3D software to visualize her concepts on the BMW M Hybrid V8. This technology allowed her to experiment with forms and shapes that would have been challenging to achieve with traditional methods, resulting in a design that complements the car’s sleek and dynamic aesthetic.

Mehretu drew inspiration from fellow artist Jenny Holzer, renowned for her text-based art and profound social commentary. Holzer’s influence is evident in Mehretu’s work, which emphasizes the intersection of art, technology, and society. The intricate details and layered elements of the car’s design encourage viewers to delve into its meaning and explore its multifaceted narrative.

The BMW M boss said during the presentation that Mehretu’s Art Car will only race once and regardless of the result, or damages to the car, the next day it will travel to Munich to join the other BMW Art Cars in the museum.