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HomeEventsThis round of BMW art cars done with artificial intelligence

This round of BMW art cars done with artificial intelligence

Software designs ‘projection mapped’ onto BMW 8 series

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BMW has unveiled “The Ultimate AI Masterpiece,” an exploration of art and technology that used artificial intelligence to generate new art cars. The virtual art installation debuted in conjunction with Frieze New York 2021 and the 50th anniversary of BMW Group Cultural Engagement, the automaker said.

The virtual art cars were created with specialized AI software.

“The Ultimate AI Masterpiece virtual art installation was created in partnership with creative technologist Nathan Shipley of Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, and Gary Yeh, art connoisseur/founder of artDrunk,” BMW said. 

“The duo leveraged the NVIDIA StyleGAN artificial intelligence model to cross-reference over 50,000 images of artwork spanning 900 years of history and a curated set of 50 works from renowned and emerging contemporary artists BMW has worked with over the past 50 years. 

“Using these inputs as a basis for understanding art, the artificial intelligence then generates entirely new works of art, merging what it learned about classical art and the styles noted from the contemporary artists. These new works have been projection-mapped onto a virtual rendition of BMW’s range-topping 8 Series Gran Coupe.”

art cars, This round of BMW art cars done with artificial intelligence, ClassicCars.com Journal

“For 50 years, BMW has supported the arts and culture through numerous initiatives as a way to engage and interact with consumers around the world in an authentic way,” said Uwe Dreher, vice president of marketing, BMW of North America.  “As we continue these efforts into 2021, and look for new and creative ways to engage audiences, we shift to a virtual setting where we are combining centuries-old art and the latest AI technology to create something completely new and exciting.”

“AI is an emerging medium of creative expression. It’s a fascinating space where art meets algorithm,” said Nathan Shipley, director of creative technology for Goodby, Silverstein & Partners. “Combining the historical works with the curated modern works and projecting the evolving images onto the 8 Series Gran Coupe serves a direct nod to BMW’s history of uniting automobiles, art, and technology.”

“During an unusually isolated time in history, we took the opportunity to curate and work with artists from around the world as a means to give viewers a true art experience digitally,” Yeh said. “It was particularly exciting to push the boundaries of art, see how technology may influence the art world in the years to come, and build on 50 years of cultural engagement at BMW.”

Larry Edsall
A former daily newspaper sports editor, Larry Edsall spent a dozen years as an editor at AutoWeek magazine before making the transition to writing for the web and becoming the author of more than 15 automotive books. In addition to being founding editor at ClassicCars.com, Larry has written for The New York Times and The Detroit News and was an adjunct honors professor at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.

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