On April 4, the only artist-signed BMW M850i xDrive Gran Coupé was sold at Christie’s auction house for 475,000 dollars. After intense international bidding both online and on site, the hammer of Tash Perrin, Deputy Chairman and auctioneer at Christie’s, finally went down to the applause of those invited to a festive dinner in Christie’s main auction room. Guests included the artist himself, Alexander S. C. Rower, president of the Calder Foundation, the collector Larry Warsh, and the artist FUTURA 2000. This M850i xDrive Gran Coupé was the very last example being produced from the limited edition’s 99 pieces which had sold out three weeks after its world premiere in mid-February. All proceeds of the auction go to the International Centre for Missing & Exploited Children (ICMEC), that Jeff Koons has personally been involved with for over two decades.
Jeff Koons, artist: “From the choice of colors to its overall look and use of material my car has a superhero feel to it. Giving to ICMEC and literally saving the lives of children is a superhero endeavor, now more than ever. I am thrilled that the auction of the car was such a great success! It should encourage anyone to get involved and appreciate the great work foundations are doing globally to make the world a better place.”
“We at ICMEC are so grateful for the generosity of the winning bidder, BMW, and especially Jeff Koons, whose partnership and support is instrumental in our efforts to help make the world safer for children,” says Bob Cunningham, ICMEC CEO. “The funds raised from this collaboration will help ICMEC respond to the critical challenges children face from the pandemic and forced migration. This generous contribution will help us to develop better technologies to locate and identify missing kids, including children who are lost, abducted, or trafficked in conflict areas, and to advocate for policies, laws, and interventions that better address issues like the proliferation of child sexual abuse material, online grooming, and live streaming that have emerged as even greater threats to children during the pandemic.”
“BMW is proud to support the International Centre for Missing & Exploited Children through our collaboration with Jeff Koons and the auction of this special edition vehicle, THE 8 X JEFF KOONS,” said Sebastian Mackensen, president and CEO, BMW of North America. “Acting with responsibility is an important quality of our company, so it is especially gratifying to know that the proceeds from this auction will support children in need.”
Bonnie Brennan, President of Christie’s Americas, remarked: “It is truly an honor for us to partner with the BMW Group and Jeff Koons in the live charity auction of the M850i xDrive Gran Coupé. At Christie’s, we believe in the power of art and design to change lives and are very proud to raise funds to support the International Centre for Missing & Exploited Children, which has improved the lives of countless children around the world for the better.”
Christie’s live charity auction at Rockefeller Plaza, where the car was on public display from April 1-4, highlighted the last example being built of THE 8 X JEFF KOONS. Offering the most exclusive version available from the original set of 99 pieces, this vehicle showcases the artist’s signature on the B-Pillar. The lucky bidder can not only look forward to owning a car signed by Jeff Koons but will also be invited by the artist to a personal tour of his Manhattan studio.
THE 8 X JEFF KOONS represents one of the most extensive custom factory production processes ever undertaken by BMW. The unique exterior and interior liveries are authentic artistic creations by the artist himself. The vehicle’s exterior features expressive and striking graphic design, combining 11 different exterior colors.
Following the charity auction in New York, THE 8 X JEFF KOONS will be presented at numerous art fairs and events in Europe, Asia and the Middle East, including the 16th Istanbul Contemporary, Paris Photo, the Goodwood Festival of Speed and West Bund Art & Design Fair Shanghai.