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Cars, Art & The Motor City

Cars, Art & The Motor City
2012/06/22 Better Blueprint

{2013 Buick Enclave}

Me likey.

Buick put together a terrific event that brought together art/design/style creatives to look behind the new design inspirations of Buick's line of automobiles including the Verano, Enclave, LaCrosse and Regal. It not only showcased Detroit's resurgence {we'll get to that under a different post} but weaved the city's rebound into the context of the raw, artistic renaissance that GM is in the midst of.

We spent the entire day riding Buick's newly remodeled vehicles (my clear favorite was the Enclave) as we toured different parts of the Motor City to see different artists whose stories and mediums bolstered Buick's desire to create vehicles that offered a "sense of warmth and comfort...and inviting.".  Achieved! The bigger question is, "Did anything miss the mark?"  While I left with a clearer understanding of the inspiration and ethos behind the amenities, the trim and color schemes, and the sleeker feel to the car, I wasn't 100% -- and I'm sure it's because I missed the sexiness of the car.

Here's the thing ~ our car selection is almost inherently a reflection of who we are, what we do, where we want to go, and how we want to be seen....a choice dictated exclusively by personal style (and, yes, some budget). That being said, the slight conundrum Buick faces is how to make the 'short list'. If you're from the "D", it's an easy skip to the short list; if you're a bang-for-the-buck junky, it's a simple hop to the short list; if you're a European-car-zealot, it's a sizable leap to the short list; and if you're a show-me-haute n' sexy enthusiast then the chasm is wide indeed.

Which are you?

The newly remodeled Buick's offer amenities that I, as a I've-always-done-foreign-cars stylista, haven't seen in my Beemer or Range (touch screen radio, built-in Pandora and XM, rear vision camera, USB ports, shiny waterfall grilles, spacious interiors). Will I buy one? Not right now because I've got one car note and that's plenty for me, but the better question is will it make the short list for the next go-round? Well, just maybe it will.....

In the meantime, do let me share an itsy bit about the artists {see below} because it's their work that sets the backdrop and inspiration for how influential art has been to the new design of Buick's fleet of cars.

  • Adam Shirley ~ his art shows the power, flexibility and beauty of metal
  • Andy Kem ~ his works shows the functional yet non-traditional use of wood and wood products
  • Bryan Baker ~ his work clings to an almost lost art of hand-set type and the uniqueness of typography
  • Graem Whyte ~ his art shows the interplay of what "is" and what "will be" using disparate elements

Artist: Adam Shirley

Artist: Andy Kem

Artist: Bryan Baker

Artist: Graem Whyte

Overall: I am impressed and look forward to seeing how this journey of design translates and weaves itself into the GM family.