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PressClub South Africa · Article.

The "Blue Hero" art project, a story about the motorsport legend Jochen Neerpasch, was launched in Romania and is already confirmed for exhibition in the United States.

"Blue Hero", a project by Romanian artist Adrian Mitu, was unveiled in Bucharest in the presence of Jochen Neerpasch. The art project follows Neerpasch's career in motorsport, his influence on brands such as BMW and his ties with other emblematic motorsport heroes such as Niki Lauda, Nelson Piquet, Michael Schumacher, Ayrton Senna and Alain Prost.

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Bucharest. "Blue Hero" is the result of a two-year endeavor of artist Adrian Mitu, a journey to create an art installation picturing the special history of BMW. In preparation of this project, Adrian Mitu originally created “Blue Coffee”, a live painting marathon of 101 paintings done in watercolor, dedicated to the 100th anniversary of the brand. It was both an exercise of storytelling and an exploration of BMW’s history. "Blue Coffee", the title of the project, referred to an association between "blue", BMW's defining color, and coffee which, in this instance, was a special pigment Mitu used in combination with his watercolors.

The "Blue Hero” installation now is an evolutionary step in Adrian Mitu’s art. The name was inspired by the first project, but this time highlights one single defining figure for the BMW brand – Jochen Neerpasch.

"Beyond cars and technology, people's stories are stronger. They create fascination and give substance to a brand story. From my point of view, Mr Jochen Neerpasch has truly transformed BMW. Much of what BMW stands for today was created by Neerpasch more than 40 years ago - from BMW M to the BMW Art Car program. So he was the obvious choice as my "Blue Hero”, explains Mitu.

"Blue Hero" consists of 15 panels which when combined create an impressive storyboard of 1.8 meters by 4.5 meters in size. The work follows two stories that spread between the 1940s and 1990s - the evolution of the BMW brand in parallel to the automotive career of Jochen Neerpasch. They highlight important milestones for both the company and Neerpasch in his personal career, such as racecar driving, the implementation of BMW Motorsport as a standalone company in 1972, establishing the first major junior team in BMW’s racing history, facilitating unique competitions such as the BMW M1 Procar Championship as well as recognizing the potential of the interaction of art and motorsport by helping Hervé Poulain kick off the first BMW Art Car by Alexander Calder in 1975 which amounted into a collection that still continues today.

"Blue Hero" was unveiled this past weekend in a special presentation at the Baneasa Shopping City in Bucharest. Next to the publicly presented artworks, the motorsport documentary “Adrenalin” was screened, an emotional movie about BMW's evolution in motorsport which features Jochen Neerpasch as one of the main characters. The official presentation gathered over 150 journalists, fans and motorsport professionals. Special guests were Tim Hahne, the director of Adrenalin, and Jochen Neerpasch himself.

"It was a very impressive journey for me, being in Romania for the first time. I was pleasantly surprised by the warm welcome, the interest shown and the enthusiasm of the audience towards motorsport. Of course, I can't leave out Adrian and the way he studied my career as a racing driver and manager in close detail and visualizing it in a very original way. He is a great artist, and I thank him for the honor of becoming a "Blue Hero"," said Jochen Neerpasch.

The project enjoys exceptional reception. Immediately after the launch, a presentation in the United States had already been confirmed, a project in cooperation with BMW Car Club of America.

The team behind the project will now focus on bringing the “Blue Hero” exhibition to a wider audience around the world, for longer periods of time, to truly offer a living legend the homage he deserves.

 

 The BMW Group

 

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 14 countries; the company has a global sales network in more than 140 countries.

 

In 2017, the BMW Group sold over 2,463,500 passenger vehicles and more than 164,000 motorcycles worldwide. The profit before tax in the financial year 2016 was approximately € 9.67 billion on revenues amounting to € 94.16 billion. As of 31 December 2016, the BMW Group had a workforce of 124,729 employees.

 

The success of the BMW Group has always been based on long-term thinking and responsible action. The company has therefore established ecological and social sustainability throughout the value chain, comprehensive product responsibility and a clear commitment to conserving resources as an integral part of its strategy.

 

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