Jochen Neerpasch – BMW’s “Blue Hero”

“Blue Hero” is the result of a two-year endeavor of artist Adrian Mitu, a journey to create an art installation picturing the special history of BMW. In preparation of this project, Adrian Mitu originally created “Blue Coffee”, a live painting marathon of 101 paintings done in watercolor, dedicated to the 100th anniversary of the brand. The title of the project referred to an association between “blue”, BMW’s defining color, and coffee which, in this instance, was a special pigment Mitu used in combination with his watercolors.

The “Blue Hero” installation now is an evolutionary step in Adrian Mitu’s art. The name was inspired by the first project, but this time highlights one single defining figure for the BMW brand – Jochen Neerpasch.

“Beyond cars and technology, people’s stories are stronger. They create fascination and give substance to a brand story. From my point of view, Mr Jochen Neerpasch has truly transformed BMW. Much of what BMW stands for today was created by Neerpasch more than 40 years ago – from BMW M to the BMW Art Car program. So he was the obvious choice as my ,Blue Hero’”, explains Mitu.

“Blue Hero” consists of 15 panels which when combined create an impressive storyboard of 1.8 meters by 4.5 meters in size. The work follows two stories that spread between the 1940s and 1990s – the evolution of the BMW brand in parallel to the automotive career of Jochen Neerpasch such as racecar driving, the implementation of BMW Motorsport as a standalone company in 1972, establishing the first major junior team in BMW’s racing history as well as recognizing the potential of the interaction of art and motorsport by helping Hervé Poulain kick off the first BMW Art Car by Alexander Calder in 1975.

“Blue Hero” was unveiled in a special presentation at the Baneasa Shopping City in Bucharest. Next to the publicly presented artworks, the motorsport documentary “Adrenalin” was screened, an emotional movie about BMW’s evolution in motorsport which features Jochen Neerpasch as one of the main characters. Special guests were Tim Hahne, the director of “Adrenalin”, and Jochen Neerpasch himself.

The project enjoys exceptional reception. Immediately after the launch, a presentation in the United States had already been confirmed, a project in cooperation with BMW Car Club of America. The team behind the project will now focus on bringing the “Blue Hero” exhibition to a wider audience around the world, to truly offer a living legend the homage he deserves.