4 Elements by Milan Kunc
27 / 2 / 2019
Locality: Manes, Prague
Partner: BMW Czech Republic
After a year of preparations when our gallery selected Milan Kunc as an artist for the project with BMW Czech Republic we announced the project together in Manes, Prague.
Prague. Automobiles and art. Automobile art. The art to build automobiles. At BMW, art and automobiles are closely connected, not only on the international level, but also within the framework of the Czech Republic. BMW Czech Republic proved this in 2018, by introducing the couple of cars BMW i3 and i8 STARLIGHT EDITION. The BMW i8 Roadster 4 Elements by Milan Kunc is loosely connected to these cars, being designed by the world-renowned Czech-German artist Milan Kunc in cooperation with the Prague gallery Cermak Eisenkraft. The project aims at an original way of pointing out topics associated with environmental protection and long-term sustainability. That was also why the revolutionary plug-in hybrid sports car BMW i8 Roadster was selected as the “art canvas”. The profit will be used to support the project of The Ocean Cleanup, an organization dealing with cleaning plastics from the oceans.
The philosophy of the BMW division focuses on environmental friendliness not only in the actual cars and their operation, but also in the entire development, production, and recycling. This complex approach attracted the attention of the Cermak Eisenkraft Gallery, who suggested Milan Kunc, who often criticises conventional automobiles and their impact on the environment in his works of art. The idea of the entire project was nature, or eventually the environment and its four elements: water, fire, earth and air. It is their balance what forms the basis of life on Earth.
"I've been thinking for a long time about how to build on ‘one of one’ project STARLIGHT EDITION that has attracted worldwide attention, and because of its uniqueness it was also exhibited in the BMW Welt in Munich as the first project created in one of the local markets. This was a great visibility for the Czech Republic. With the new project, I decided to move from design to art with a global impact. BMW i has an absolutely unique overall environmental approach. That's why the profit from the sale of this car will be devoted to The Ocean Cleanup, which is focused on cleaning the ocean," said Jana Dvořáková, manager of BMW i in the Czech republic.
Milan Kunc (1944) is a painter, who has worked mostly in Germany, Italy, the USA, the Netherlands, India and the Czech Republic, from which he emigrated in 1969, and where he returned in 2004. His art captivates by the original style, elaboration, and contents. He is considered to represent several art styles at once, like pop surrealism, Ost Pop, or low-brow movement; he created his own painting expression, which may be seen in his drawings, photo-collages, and most of all on canvas or plate gold. The fact that work of Milan Kunc surmounts borders of states is best documented by the numerous exhibitions all around the world, where his paintings, as well as ceramics, appeared. Quite often, his work presents topics associated with negative impacts of the modern world on nature and environment in general.
The motives of the four elements from each angle.
BMW i8 Roadster 4 Elements by Milan Kunc carries on its body the pop surrealist expression of the four essential elements in a clearly recoginzable style of Milan Kunc. Each part of the car creates an independent story of each of the elements - fire, water, air and earth. The viewer is specifically provoked by the painter, with reference to the current state of our planet. The painting evokes questions on the direction of further development of mankind and our Planet Earth.
Milan Kunc comments on his ideas behind the design of the unique car.
“Butterfly and vegetation represents the element of air and energetic transformation of natural powers. I selected the butterfly as the symbol of this miraculous metamorphosis.”
• Right side - water.
“Fish, snails, crabs, starfish - the occurrence of these animals and their persistence represent the balance of the water environment, for which we, the people, are responsible. It is them who are dependent on the cleanness of this element - water.”
• Left side - earth and air.
“Countryside transformed by the acts of us, the people. I present a unique environment for people and animals; its cleanness is a condition for any further development of life. Wind power plants depicted here use the power of wind, a renewable source of energy. Flowers, bees, birds and animals then represent balance in nature.”
• The back - fire.
“Our planet is a part of the universe, in which all these metamorphoses have been going on since ancient times. Fire symbolizes the source of energy needed for the preservation of life and its development. And also the power driving forward - the engine, heart of the car! I briefly touch on the topic of the universe, referring to the need for recycling. It is also the challenge for our responsibility in using fossil sources of energy.”