A Pop-up Art Event
In 2022 BMW are once again joining hands with world-renowned artist Jeff Koons to create THE 8 × JEFF KOONS art car based on the four-door BMW 8 Series in an edition limited to just 99 vehicles worldwide. One of the most influential artists in the world today, Jeff Koons is famed for his unique creative power and the way he combines rigorous conceptualism with commercial aesthetics, high-impact visual displays, and exquisitely-realized expressive artistry. Koons describes his design for this edition of the 8 Series as a melding of the thrill of motion with Minimalism and familiar signifiers from Pop Art, in what for him is his own idea of a dream car. And it is not just something to go on display as a collector’s item in a museum, it is a “a work of art that can be out there going full tilt.”
This artwork will be coming to Chengdu between August 26 and August 28 2022, raising the curtain on an art tour of China in the form of a pop-up art event. Sponsored by the BMW Group, with artistic planning by UCCA Lab, this art event centered on the “THE 8 × JEFF KOONS” collector’s edition art car and with the title “I’m Going POP” will combine fluid dynamics and pop art to redefine the meaning of “pop!”
Character design that lets you imagine yourself as:
The driver: the moment that your fire up the engine;
The artist: the moment your work goes on display;
The experiencer: The moment your walk into the exhibition space;
The collector: the moment you add an exceptional piece of art to your collection.
An act of setting out in full force;
A state of mind that inspires self-confidence.
Rapid motion and expanded dimensions;
Jeff Koons’ tribute to and dialogue with Pop Art.
When you say the words “I’m Going POP,” it gives rise to a expression on your lips and an attitude in your mind; you are moving forward with the avant-garde of art, coming out with a bang!
The exhibition employs curved imagery replete with a sense of speed to create a representation of the moving scenery you experience when driving in the form of highly abstract symbolism, fashioning a journey down a highway in which you really feel like you are moving forwards, seeking to draw on and revisit the history of Pop Art. The artistic as has paid tribute to a number of a classic forbearers that prominently feature highways and road signs, such as Allan D’Arcangelo’s US Highway 1 (1962) and Robert Indiana’s 8 (1961), showing the inherent linkages between Pop Art and car culture and creating a hyper-real “Vision of the Highway” within the exhibition space.
An inflatable installation occupies a central spot in the exhibition space—as time goes by the number of bubbles steadily increases. The concept of air flow draws from classic symbols in Pop Art and from Jeff Koons’ graphic design for the Series 8 art car. Together, Pop Art, the artist and his work, the art car, and the “Bubbletecture” progressively draw the visitor into an understanding of the space, inspiring an exploration of airflow and energy.
As this guiding line slowly unravels, it presents as eight separate chapters: “POP Resonances”; “A Pop Art Journey Through A Moving Landscape”; “Flowing, Reflecting and Sparkling: The 8 × Jeff Koons Creative Scrapbook”; “The Best You Can Be: To The Boundaries and To The Peaks”; “Bang! Inspirational Energy”; “Dream Car Goes Pop”; “Input and Accumulation”; and “Pop Art Workshop.” These give visitors a multi-dimensional experience rich in visual delights.
Jeff Koons (b. 1955, York, Pennsylvania, USA) is among the world’s most influential and iconoclastic living artists. He studied at the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. He received a BFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art in 1976.
Since his first solo exhibition in 1980, Koons’ work has been shown in major galleries and institutions throughout the world. His work was the subject of a major exhibition organized by the Whitney Museum of American Art, “Jeff Koons: A Retrospective” (June 27 to October 19, 2014), which travelled to the Centre Pompidou Paris (November 26, 2014 to April 27, 2015) and the Guggenheim Bilbao (June 9 to September 27, 2015).
Koons has become internationally renowned for his sculptures and paintings that explore meaning in our media-saturated age. Marrying rigorous conceptualism with commercial aesthetics, and spectacular displays with an unparalleled degree of technical finesse, Koons has repeatedly tested the limits of both fabrication and art history, simultaneously redefining Minimalism and Pop Art. His “Inflatables,” which apply Duchamp’s concept of the readymade to objects rendered in stainless steel and often enlarged to monumental scale, have become emblems of our contemporary era. The mirrored finishes of sculptures such as Rabbit (1986) and Balloon Dog (1994–2000), as well as the more recent “Gazing Ball” series (2012–21), create opportunities for affirmation through literal self-reflection. These shiny, brightly colored surfaces extend to Koons’ photorealistic paintings, their fusion of pop and art historical references achieving his stated aim to “communicate with the masses.” Transcending time and geography, high and low culture, Koons’ art imparts a visual experience of the sublime.
With its four brands BMW, MINI, Rolls-Royce, and BMW Motorrad, the BMW Group is the world’s leading premium manufacturer of automobiles and motorcycles and also provides premium financial and mobility services. The BMW Group production network comprises 31 production and assembly facilities in 15 countries; the company has a global sales network in more than 140 countries.
The success of the BMW Group has always been based on long-term thinking and responsible action. The company set its course for the future early on and is making sustainability and resource efficiency the focus of the company’s strategic direction—from the supply chain, through production, to the end of the use phase, for all its products.
UCCA Lab is an interdisciplinary platform under UCCA Group for new kinds of art-adjacent collaboration. Formed with UCCA Center for Contemporary Art at its core, UCCA Group works to bring China into global dialogue through contemporary art. UCCA Lab has worked with local governments and cultural departments throughout China, prominent brands across a variety of industries, and artists and creators across cultures to create bespoke art and cultural events, exhibitions, projects, and campaigns. Its activities have become a defining feature of UCCA’s cultural presence. UCCA Lab seeks to share the joys of contemporary art and culture with an ever-larger audience, continually exploring urban space, interacting with local contexts, and expanding the potential forms that art projects may take.
THE 8 × JEFF KOONS “I’m Going POP!” pop-up art event is organized by the BMW Group, with artistic planning provided by UCCA Lab, part of the UCCA Group. The exhibition is curated by Men Jiecong and odd Design Agency provides exhibition design.