Between the 1930s and 1980s, American automotive design reached new heights, quietly staking out a place as an art form in its own right.
This innovative period saw the birth of concept cars whose appeal lay not so much with the power of their engines or the luxury of their added features, but in the sheer beauty and novelty of their overall design. Automakers employed artists from outside the industry with the primary goal of creating bold new designs whose "eye appeal" would prove irresistible to the public. In their heyday, thousands of these prototype sketches were created, but nearly all were either lost or deliberately destroyed by the car companies to minimize the risk of copycats.
In IMAGINE!, Patrick Kelley presents a wealth of eye-catching car designs - more than 230 images from eighty-seven different artists - that he has spent over fifteen years gathering and assembling into the Kelley Collection. These artworks are rare survivors, vivid illustrations of the singular work of the men and woman who drew and designed the vehicles from their art school days through their later employment with the auto industry's Big Three: GM, Chrysler and Ford. IMAGINE! is a tender tribute to the artists' contributions and imagination, transporting us back to a time in US commercial history when the wildest dreams were encouraged and there was nothing but the open road ahead.
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