Forget Surround Sound—the Fanciest Rolls-Royce on the Market Now Comes With Its Own Art Gallery

The luxury limo features a dashboard space for bespoke artwork—and Rolls-Royce will collaborate with an artist of your choosing to fill it.

The Rolls-Royce Phantom. Courtesy of Rolls-Royce.
The Rolls-Royce Phantom. Courtesy of Rolls-Royce.

Love both cars and art? Get a load of the new model of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars’s flagship limousine, the Phantom, which features a dashboard designed to display your favorite artwork. The luxury car manufacturer will collaborate with the artist of your choice to design a piece to the proper dimensions.

“Patrons are now invited to commission artworks for their own personal gallery within Phantom, in essence, bringing art, within art,” said company CEO Torsten Müller Ötvös in a statement. The artworks will be embedded behind a specially designed glass panel in the dashboard.

The art gallery on the new Rolls-Royce Phantom. Courtesy of Rolls-Royce.

The art gallery on the new Rolls-Royce Phantom. Courtesy of Rolls-Royce.

The vehicle, priced at a hefty $520,000, has been redesigned and re-engineered, allowing for more personalization options. Unlike all previous Rolls-Royce vehicles, which have been designed and engineered on platforms from owner BMW, the new Phantom, unveiled July 27, will be built on an in-house aluminum platform from the UK automaker.

It’s the first new Phantom in 14 years, and the second to be launched since the company’s acquisition by BMW, finalized in 2003. The German automaker has shown a consistent interest in the arts in recent years, funding an artist residency program of sorts called the BMW Art Journey, and designing an annual BMW Art Car.

The art gallery on the new Rolls-Royce Phantom, featuring an algorithmically generated and 3D-printed artwork by German product designer Thorsten Franck. Courtesy of Rolls-Royce.

The art gallery on the new Rolls-Royce Phantom, featuring an algorithmically generated and 3-D-printed artwork by German product designer Thorsten Franck. Courtesy of Rolls-Royce.

The addition of the art gallery was meant as a way “reinterpret the motor cars’ dashboard from being a dead expanse into a riveting focal point,” said Giles Taylor, head of design for Rolls-Royce, in a statement that noted that dashboard provides an “unprecedented opportunity for the protection and presentation of works of art.”

Among the examples on view at the unveiling were a landscape oil painting by Chinese artist Liang Yuanwei and a sculpted silk appliqué piece by British artist Helen Amy Murray, inspired by the Rolls-Royce hood ornament. “I saw that it was possible to combine my artistic vision with the vision of Rolls-Royce. I have found a common ground between my own creative system and what I feel is the culture of Rolls-Royce,” said Liang in a statement.

The art gallery on the new Rolls-Royce Phantom, featuring <em>Whispered Muse</em> by Helen Amy Murray, inspired by the Rolls-Royce hood ornament. Courtesy of Rolls-Royce.

The art gallery on the new Rolls-Royce Phantom, featuring Whispered Muse by Helen Amy Murray, inspired by the Rolls-Royce hood ornament. Courtesy of Rolls-Royce.

Prospective buyers shouldn’t feel limited by those designs presented in the initial rollout, as car owners will be able to customize the space with the bespoke work of their choosing. “If you have a preference for Jeff Koons, we will work with Jeff Koons,” Rolls-Royce designer Alex Innes told Autoweek.

If you aren’t in the market for an expensive artwork to go with your expensive car, Rolls-Royce will also decorate the area with special treatments in wood, porcelain, leather, or metal.


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