BMW’s partnership with various artists is well-known, as seen on their various Art Cars throughout the years. One such example is a 1991 BMW 525i, which became a canvas for South African artist Esther Mahlangu, who adorned the car with bright colours and unique ornamental shapes, typical of Ndebele art.

Now, 25 years later, BMW has partnered with Mahlangu on a new project, this time involving the new BMW 7 Series, specifically the 740Li. For the project, BMW developed a special white-coloured, fine-wood trim to be painted with Esther’s characteristic motifs.

These precious trim pieces are then sealed to ensure their longevity, before they are installed into the vehicle. “To paint is in my heart and it’s in my blood. The way I paint was taught to me by my mother and my grandmother. The images and colours have changed and I have painted on many different surfaces and objects but I still love to paint. The patterns I have used on the BMW parts marry tradition to the essence of BMW,” said the 81-year old artist from Mpumalanga.

“When BMW sent me the panels to paint, I could see the design in my head and I just wanted to get started! I start by painting the small ones first to get the feel of the surface and then it was easy as the design follows the lines of the panels,” he added.

For those interested in the unique 740Li, the vehicle will be shown to the public for the first time at this year’s Frieze Art Fair from October 5-9 in Regent’s Park, London. The vehicle will be offered for silent auction, with all proceeds from the sale being donated to The Art Room, a charity that uses art therapy to help kids with emotional and behavioural issues.

GALLERY: 1991 BMW 525i Art Car