BMW Art Journey winner Zac Langdon-Pole presents new artwork and celebrates book premiere at Soho House Art Talk. BMW is official partner of Art Basel in Miami Beach 2019.

Miami Beach. From December 5 to 8, 2019, the Art
Basel show in Miami Beach will present a wide range of artistic
oeuvres by emerging and established artists represented by 269 leading
international galleries presenting modern and contemporary art. The
BMW Art Journey, a joint initiative between Art Basel and BMW, will
present new work from last year’s recipient Zac
at the BMW Lounge, located in the Collectors
Lounge area. Langdon-Pole´s publication documenting his journey will
be launched during an exclusive Soho House BMW i Art Talk on
December 3, 2019. As a long-term global partner of the show, BMW will
again offer the VIP shuttle service. Street artist Spencer
“MAR“ Guilburt
will embark on the BMW 8 Series
Mural Tour throughout the city of Miami, documented
digitally @bmwgroupculture.

BMW Art Journey “Sutures of the Sky” by Zac
Last year’s BMW Art Journey recipient Zac
Langdon-Pole (represented by Michael Lett, Auckland) will be in Miami
Beach presenting new artwork and the publication “Constellations” on
his BMW Art Journey. The trajectory of Zac Langdon-Pole’s BMW Art
Journey, titled “Sutures of the Sky”, took him back in time by
exploring how people have mapped the stars throughout history. Long
before the compass and the sextant, it was skillful observation of
migratory birds and following the stars which allowed Polynesian
voyagers to navigate great distances all across the Pacific Ocean.
With his focus on celestial mapping, from Europe to the Pacific
Islands, Langdon-Pole sought to trace how Western forms of mapping
have interacted with perspectives from the Pacific region.

“The BMW Art Journey allowed me to research the idea of time and
navigation as well as how humans have tried to map their place in the
universe over the millennia. I was compelled by the idea that
something as lofty and laden with awe as the stars could be a useful
lens through which to explore more human and planetary truths. An
important realization for me on this journey has been to see multiple
forms of mapping in relation to one another. This is how richer, more
complex stories and relationships to a place can be formed”,
states Zac Langdon-Pole reflecting on his travels.

Weaving through Western Europe, and the Pacific islands of
Hawai’i, the Marshall Islands, Samoa and New Zealand from December
2018 to March 2019, his BMW Art Journey sought to understand how
culture intersects with the science of celestial mapping, and
consequently how it transcends into larger existential inquiries about
our identities and our location in this increasingly globalized world.

From London, Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Dordrecht to Paris,
Montignac, and Marseille the first leg of Langdon-Pole’s journey
provided a site for preliminary research on early printed star charts
and representations of celestial mapping between different regions. In
London, the artist visited the Royal Academy’s “Oceania” exhibition,
including works by indigenous artists and craftsmen spanning 500 years
that demonstrate the astounding mobility of people in the Pacific
Islands throughout history. In France Langdon-Pole viewed a
prehistoric map of the night sky situated within the Lascaux caves
near Montignac. It dates back at least 16,500 years, depicting star
constellations that were believed to keep track of astronomical
events. The research and travel during this leg of the BMW Art Journey
examined how the star systems of the Southern Hemisphere were imagined
from a European perspective across various historical periods.

The second leg of the artist’s journey kicked off in Hawai’i,
where the artist visited Mauna Kea and Honolulu. The Mauna Kea
Observatories, located at the summit of Mauna Kea on the Big Island of
Hawai’i, offered Langdon-Pole the opportunity to explore the presence
and mediated dominance of Western astronomy as a starting point in the
Pacific Ocean. While these observatories represent the pinnacle of
scientific and technological engagement with the stars, the artist
explored how their presence is entwined with fraught opposition by
indigenous Hawaiians.

Furthermore, Langdon-Pole traveled to the Marshall Islands to
meet with Alson Kelen of the organization Waan Aelõñ in Majel (Canoes
of the Marshall Islands) (WAM) on the atoll of Majuro. In doing so the
artist aimed to learn how connections to these past traditions can tie
to the future of these islands in the context of rising sea levels.
Amongst delving into star navigation methods of the region, the artist
also researched the Mattang, Meddo and Rebbelib ‘stick charts’ that
map the wave currents and ocean swells throughout the 34 islands and
atolls of the Marshall Islands archipelago.

Before heading back to New Zealand to conduct further research and
consolidate his work, Langdon-Pole visited the island of Upolu and
Apia in Samoa. He travelled together with Samoan-New Zealand artist
and composer Michael Lee to learn about the traditions of celestial
navigation songs.

Zac Langdon-Pole

at Art Basel in Miami Beach 2019

Zac Langdon-Pole will be on the ground at Art Basel in Miami
Beach to present new artwork at the BMW Lounge. The presentation will
debut a new body of work that stems directly from his research on the
BMW Art Journey. Throughout his travels Langdon-Pole collected small
samples of sand from specified locations. Then, using an analogue
photographic method in a darkroom, he utilized these samples to make
photograms of sand from each specified location. Sand is a material
with deeply metaphorical associations—from being an analogy for time,
as with an hour-glass, to the infinite, as in Jorge Luis Borges’s
short story “The
Book of Sand”, to loss and entropy, as in Paul Celan’s poetry
collection, “The Sand from the Urns”.

In a wider context, Langdon-Pole considers these works as
lyrical documents of sites threatened by the prevailing forces of
climate breakdown: the erosion of shorelines and the desertification
of landscapes. Resembling a view of a starry night-sky, complete with
data on the date and place each sand sample was collected,
Langdon-Pole’s sand photograms extend the aphorism ‘as above so below’
towards speculative futures of our planet’s changing climate.

Also presented will be a piece by Langdon-Pole entitled
Orbits” (2019). Consisting of a pair of human anatomical
(orbital) eye models, Langdon-Pole has replaced the eyeball component
of each model with carved and polished spheres of varying materials.
In one is a sphere of jasper embedded with numerous fossilized
Turritella shells (approximately 250 million years old), juxtaposed
with a sphere of rainbow obsidian. Rainbow obsidian is rock formed
from volcanic lava that has cooled rapidly. Obsidian is extremely
opaque, and rainbow or sheen obsidian— as it is also known—contains
naturally forming nanorod crystals that reveal iridescent rings of
color when struck by light. With their paired juxtapositions,
Langdon-Pole’s “Orbits” convey varying orders of time,
suggesting an elapsed duration or perhaps the unending flows and
transformations of earthly matter.

Soho House BMW i Art Talk “Stargazing – a conversation
about art and space” on December 3, 2019 at 7.30 PM with Zac

Sanford Biggers and Terry Virts
As part of an
ongoing collaboration, Soho House and BMW i have co-created an
international program of events and experiences throughout Soho House
locations in Europe and North America with panelists including Chris
Dercon, Christian Marclay, Abigail Reynolds, Jon Rafman, and David Adjaye.

The iteration of the series during Art Basel in Miami Beach will
focus on artistic narratives around constellations in space and
cosmos. Panelists are Zac Langdon-Pole, last year´s
BMW Art Journey recipient, visual artist Sanford
and Terry Virts, former NASA
astronaut and ISS commander, moderated by András Szántó. The event
will feature the launch of the Hatje Cantz-published
book, “Constellations”, which documents
Langdon-Pole’s BMW Art Journey.  The panel discussion will be followed
by a cocktail reception. 

BMW 8 Series Mural Tour with Alexandre Arrechea and Spencer
“MAR“ Guilburt
Paying homage to Miami as a hub for
street art, BMW partnered up with street artist Spencer “MAR”
and visual artist Alexandre
. The two atists will go on a tour with the all-new
BMW 8 Series, to visit murals in the city of Miami – partly created by
Guilburt – as well as artworks of Arrechea exhibited at Nara Roesler
Gallery’s booth at Art Basel in Miami Beach. Their unfolding
conversation will explore intersections and respective inspirations of
their practices. The murals are located across Miami, from Wynwood Art
District to South Beach and the Midtown Design District. The BMW 8
Series Mural Tour will be shared on the social media channels of the
artists (@this_means,
@alexandrearrechea) and via BMW Group Cultural Engagement (@bmwgroupculture).

BMW is a global partner of Art Basel and has supported Art
Basel’s three shows in Basel, Miami Beach and Hong Kong for many years.

For further questions please contact:
Prof. Dr
Thomas Girst
BMW Group Corporate and Intergovernmental
Head of Cultural Engagement
Telephone: +49 89 382
247 53


Dorothee Dines
Art Basel Global
Head of Media
Telephone: +41 58 206 27 06

About BMW Art Journey

Launched in 2015, the BMW Art Journey is a collaboration between
Art Basel and BMW, created to recognize and support emerging artists
worldwide. This unique award is open to artists who are exhibiting in
the Discoveries sector during Art Basel in Hong Kong. A judging panel
comprised of internationally renowned experts meet first to select a
shortlist of three artists from the sector, who are then invited to
submit proposals for a journey aimed to further develop their ideas
and artistic work. The jury reconvenes to choose a winner from the
three proposals.


About Art Basel

Founded in 1970 by gallerists from Basel, Art Basel today
stages the world’s premier art shows for Modern and contemporary art,
sited in Basel, Miami Beach, and Hong Kong. Defined by its host city
and region, each show is unique, which is reflected in its
participating galleries, artworks presented, and the content of
parallel programming produced in collaboration with local institutions
for each edition. Art Basel’s engagement has expanded beyond art fairs
through a number of new initiatives such as The Art Basel and UBS
Global Art Market Report, Art Basel Cities, and more recently Art
Basel Inside. For further information, please visit 


About BMW Group Cultural Engagement
For almost
50 years now, the BMW Group has initiated and engaged in over 100
cultural cooperations worldwide. The company places the main focus of
its long-term commitment on contemporary and modern art, classical
music and jazz as well as architecture and design. In 1972, three
large-scale paintings were created by the artist Gerhard Richter
specifically for the foyer of the BMW Group’s Munich headquarters.
Since then, artists such as Andy Warhol, Jeff Koons, Daniel Barenboim,
Jonas Kaufmann and architect Zaha Hadid have cooperated with BMW. In
2016 and 2017, female artist Cao Fei from China and American John
Baldessari created the next two vehicles for the BMW Art Car
Collection. Besides co-initiatives, such as BMW Tate Live, the BMW Art
Journey and the “Opera for All” concerts in Berlin, Munich, Moscow and
London, the company also partners with leading museums and art fairs
as well as orchestras and opera houses around the world. As part of
its art programme “Muse”, Rolls-Royce partners for the initiative “The
Dream Commission” with two internationally esteemed art institutions.
Together with Fondation Beyeler and Serpentine Galleries, emerging and
established artists are invited to submit a moving-image work that
delivers an immersive sensory experience. The artists are nominated
and chosen by renowned personalities of the art world like Daniel,
Birnbaum, Hans Ulrich Obrist, Cao Fei, and Theodora Vischer. BMW Group
takes absolute creative freedom in all its cultural activities for
granted – as this initiative is as essential for producing
groundbreaking artistic work as it is for major innovations in a
successful business.

Further information:

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 15
countries; the company has a global sales network in more than 140 countries.

In 2018, the BMW Group sold over 2,490,000 passenger vehicles
and more than 165,000 motorcycles worldwide. The profit before tax in
the financial year 2018 was € 9.815 billion on revenues amounting to
€ 97.480 billion. As of 31 December 2018, the BMW Group had a
workforce of 134,682 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.