THE 8 X JEFF KOONS transforms the elegant, high-performance BMW 8 series gran coupe into a rolling sculpture, extremely limited to just 99 editions.
The design debuts to the public during frieze los angeles, following designboom’s exclusive previews at munich’s pinakothek der moderne in september 2021 and then at the concorso d’eleganze villa d’este in october.
THE 8 X JEFF KOONS races on to the scene 12 years after the US artist’s BMW art car was first revealed. the canvas – an M3 GT2 that time – went on to participate in the 24 hours of le mans. amongst global admiration, its conception led to bono, the lead singer of irish rock band U2, writing in the new york times in 2010 that koons should be involved in designing the car of the future. just over a decade on, the opportunity arose.
200+ HOURS OF EXTERIOR PAINT WORK
The new collaboration sees the limited fleet of rolling sculptures – or technically M850i xDrive gran coupes – not only be displayed as coveted collectors’ items in museums but also destined to flourish on roads too. the sporty shape of the car received what BMW claims was the most extensive design effort in the brand’s history. the artist worked with highly specialized professionals at the BMW plants in dingolfing and landshut, germany, to apply its exterior paint job, often using magnifying glasses. the process took over 200 hours of work. the result is expressive and striking, combining 11 different colors that range from blue to silver as well as yellow to black.
Jeff Koons’ recognizable pop art touch is spotted across the sportscar canvas. the word POP! is boldly present on the flanks, supported by an image of vapor thrusting to symbolize the sculpture’s power and speed. exploding lines of color at the rear pay homage to the layered patterns of the artist’s 2010 BMW art car.
A CABIN FOR POWERFUL SUPERHEROES
Inside, the car’s custom cabin references superheroes – the power of the driver and joyful experience of the passenger – as its colors are borrowed from comic book universes. the striking red and blue hues adorn the high-end materials, fine leather and stitching throughout. even the cupholder lid is exclusive, featuring edition badging and the artist’s signature in bavarian blue.