Art is all about defying expectations, making you see the world you know in a fresh way. Take the car, for example. The Porsche 911 moves with speed and purpose, and even though it’s light compared to an SUV, you still perceive it as a heavy object that can’t be moved with the power of a single man. So it’s the exact opposite of a pool float flamingo, which is light and can be pushed by a light breeze. Yet it’s these elements that have been combined by artist Chris Labrooy to create the Flamingo Neunelfer series.
This combination creates a surreal, attention-grabbing art style that even Porsche has acknowledged. In fact, over the past few years, Labrooy has been commissioned so often by Porsche themselves that we thought we’d do a little tribute to his work and talk about its conception.
The floating 911 emerged onto the scene in early 2018 as a bright pink classic car. A lot of the space from the top of the wheel openings down had been cleared up and replaced with an inflatable device. At the same time, a plastic air-filled flamingo head poked through the windshield, almost inviting you to push this into the pool and get a nice tan while sipping on a nice cocktail.
The concept is so simple yet well executed. It forces you to stop taking the car so seriously. At the same time, the bright colors of the flamingo float and the lines of a classic motor immediately give you “Miami beach” vibes.
While many see Chris Labrooy’s fame as based on a simple concept, we have to mention that this is no accident. He was already a professional adman when this stuff burst onto the scene. The Scottish artist studied product design at the famous Royal College of Art in London. And after completing his master’s, he was drawn to the digital, 3D world where he could create surreal, dreamy works for Apple, Nike, and Citroen.
The use of the 911 is not coincidental because even carmaker Porsche describes him as a ” long-time Porsche fan and owner.” In 2021, as part of its 20-year anniversary in China, the company even turned one of Labrooy’s digital works into a real-life piece of art, the 996 Swan.
Such successful artwork inevitably resulted in spinoffs. The photo gallery below depicts the Wagyu Beef Toyota Supra, the Elephant BMW E9, and my personal favorite, the Texas Longhorn Dodge Charger. But with the recent launch of the 911 Dakar, we inevitably find ourselves gazing at its spirit animal, the 911 Safari Camel.