Southern Guild and BMW South Africa kick off their programme of creative collaborations with a specially commissioned art piece that will occupy a central position in the gallery’s next exhibition, Colour Field, which opens on 19 July at GUILD in the Silo District. The series of activations inside the gallery are a key part of the recently announced partnership between Southern Guild and the luxury motor vehicle manufacturer.
Inspired by the exhibition’s focus on colour, BMW commissioned Southern Guild to design a custom artwork that will become a permanent feature at the car manufacturer’s headquarters in Johannesburg when the show closes on 12 September.
The large-scale wall-mounted design piece draws from BMW’s archives of premium paint colours. “We took our cue from the work of American Colour Field painter Frank Stella as well as a vintage BMW Motorsport logo that we discovered when researching the brand’s history,” said Julian McGowan, co-founder of Southern Guild and chief creative officer of The Guild Group.
Each of the 26 shades used in the artwork was sourced from BMW’s extensive catalogue of “special request” exterior paintworks that customers can choose from to personalise their car. The piece will be accompanied by an i8 Coupé in Frozen Yellow, a non-metallic shimmery matt-finish that highlights the car’s sculptural contours.
This hybrid sports car, boasting an attractively sleek design, is now quieter, lighter and more efficient, with LED-light interior features and tail lights. The latter is designed to enable the wind to flow through, increasing speed performance from 0 to 100 km in just 4.4 seconds. Its innovative plug-in hybrid engine generates 275 kW and 570 Nm, proving BMW’s driving force to build green and ground-breaking cars that limit harmful emissions.
Colour Field will premiere bold new work by a group of designers whose approach to colour is immersive and transformative. Working in a wide variety of materials – including glass, aluminium, wood, clay, fabric and leather –the designers explore the interplay of colour with light, texture and materiality in contemporary furniture, lighting, ceramics and textiles.
Participating artists and design studios include Atang Tshikare, Ceramic Matters, Eric Loubser, Houtlander, Jesse Ede, John Murray, Laurie Wiid van Heerden, Nicholas Coutts, Ronel Jordaan, Studio August, Tonic Design, Xavier Clarisse and Zizipho Poswa.
The exhibition is inspired by the Colour Field painters of the 1950s and 60s, who included Mark Rothko, Barnett Newman, Helen Frankenthaler, Kenneth Noland and Frank Stella. Their paintings featured large planes or bands of colour that enveloped the viewer, abandoning form and figuration to evoke pure emotion. For the first time in abstract painting figure and ground became one, with the space of the picture – conceived as a “field” – seeming to spread out beyond the edges of the canvas.
Visitors to the gallery are invited to personally test drive the BMW i8 Coupé by appointment through Southern Guild.
For more information or to sign up for a test drive, contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Colour Field runs from 19 July to 12 September 2018.
Southern Guild opening hours:
Monday – Friday: 9am – 6pm
Saturday: 10am – 2pm
Accompanying this exhibition will be Super Hue in GUILD Store, a satellite show of ceramics by Clementina van der Walt, Ben Orkin and Carin Dorrington. The ceramicists were invited to respond to the concept behind Colour Field and have each explored their own distinctive use of form and exceptional application of colour.