Lauda's idol

Written by Super User | Friday, 28 March 2008 15:14

The Kunsthal in Rotterdam isn't exactly the place to expect a 3 time world champion to do an official opening.

Niki Lauda declared at the opening of Jean Tinguely everything moves that he won't make a habit of it. "Official openings are awfully boring. And usually I don't really like to look back. I'm only doing this to honour my friend Jean Tinguely." Jean Tinguely (1925-1991) is one of the icons of modern art, he became world famous with his weird moving sculptures made from rusty iron and rubbish. The noisy and squeaking objects are in Holland for the first time since 1973.

The former F1 champion was befriended with the Swiss artist for many years. He met him at the racetrack. Tinguely was just as Lauda befriended with the late Swiss racing driver Jo Siffert who died in 1971. Tinguely was a keen racing enthusiast, even adapting his exhibition-schedules to not miss a single Grand Prix. Initially the young artist had not enough money to attend races, instead he dressed up in an old blue overall holding a spanner in one hand and cheekily forcing his way into the pits with the mechanics.

Tinguely's love for speed is extensively featured at the exhibition with various painted cars and cups designed by Tinguely. Tinguely's also used many parts from F1 cars in his art, however it might be difficult to spot them, it' worth a try anyway. Lauda concluded: "I have only two heroes; one was Enzo Ferrari, who was incredibly tough when you lost, and the other was Tinguely. He was a chaotic artist, but a great and warm person." And off Lauda went in his own plane.

Jean Tinguely, Alles Beweegt! was at the Kunsthal in Rotterdam until the 27 January 2008. Due to some (a lot of) delay of the setting up of this site, we are only just able to put this article up. But happily most of Tinguely's work can be seen at the 'Tinguely Museum' in Basel. For more information: http://www.tinguely.ch/