Porsche by Design at North Carolina Museum of Art, Raleigh (2013-14)

Porsche by Design: Seducing Speed

North Carolina Museum of Art, Raleigh
12 October 2013 - 20 January 2014

Press release text by North Carolina Museum of Art

On October 12, 2013, the North Carolina Museum of Art (NCMA) opens its first-ever design exhibition, bringing together the largest and most diverse group of Porsche automobiles ever on display in a U.S. art museum. Porsche by Design: Seducing Speed features more than 20 automobiles that together trace the evolution of the singular Porsche design aesthetic from its inception in the 1930s through the present day. Porsche by Design is organized by guest curator Ken Gross, a renowned automotive journalist and the former director of the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles. The NCMA’s Barbara Wiedemann is managing curator.

Beginning with the crisp minimalism of the 1938 Type 64 Berlin-Rom Racer— the oldest model featured in the exhibition— the cars on display show the evolution of the signature design principles that have long linked Porsche with beauty, artistry, technology, and innovation. Other examples include the aerodynamic design that was the hallmark of the Formula One race cars of the 1960s, and the technical innovation and advancements that were introduced with contemporary models such as the 911 Carrera.

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Highlights of Porsche by Design include:

> The 1938/39 Type 64 Berlin-Rom racer designed by Porsche founder Dr. Ferdinand Porsche; it is the precursor to all Porsche automobiles manufactured after 1948.

> A handcrafted 1949 Gmünd coupe designed by Dr. Porsche’s son “Ferry” Porsche, one of about 50 aluminum-bodied sports cars from the first Porsche “factory,” a converted sawmill in Gmünd, Austria.

> Steve McQueen’s iconic Porsche Speedster, a Type 356A from 1958, synonymous with the late Golden Age in Hollywood, on loan to the Museum from his son Chad McQueen.

> A rare Type 804 Formula One race car, one of only four of this model ever built, and the car that Dan Gurney raced to victory at the Austrian Grand Prix.

> Janis Joplin’s psychedelic Porsche Type 356C, on loan to the NCMA from the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum.

> A Porsche GT3R hybrid race car prototype from 2010.

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The Museum is also partnering with the College of Design at North Carolina State University (NCSU) to offer two for-credit courses created around Porsche by Design. “Special Topics in Industrial Design: Cultivating Creativity” and “Special Topics in Industrial Design: Innovation by Design” will be taught at the Museum by NCSU faculty, and students across the state may register for the courses. The Museum is working with NCSU and other colleges in the state on additional programs throughout the run of the exhibition.

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