|Join Our Mailing List|
North American International Auto Show, It's Really About the Cars
It's the next to the last day of the Auto Show, and it would be a sacrilege to miss it. Who could pass up on an opportunity to participate in one of Detroit's most revered institutions, the 100th North American International Auto Show; to lose yourself in the crowds, and to just revel in the paint and chrome filled aisles. This year was no exception. The city was jammed with car aficionados celebrating at their premiere event. The staging floor through a camera's lens resembled a wallpaper of color and movement. Cobo Hall glistened and the sounds of people jostling and vying for position filled the space with anticipation. Camera in hand, we entered the hallowed exhibit halls. The lights blinked their welcome, bidding all to their chosen display, like barkers on a carousel. It was obvious to the passive observer that the more light, sound and movement, the deeper the crowds in front of the exhibit, drawn almost hypnotically in their direction.
The Chrysler display sensuous, rugged and commanding, with a patterned waterfall drape pulsing through its center. The Jeep Wrangler poised at a treacherous angle on its synthetic rock perch, was a marvel to behold.
BMW's exhibit was elegant and inviting, and encouraged visitors to experience 'ownership.' Surprisingly, they had set up a balcony for BMW owners. From this vantage point, one could enjoy a panoramic view of the entire exhibit floor. Glancing to the right, deep golden yellow Hummers gleamed in the distance surrounded by masses of humanity. Drifting slowly to the left, the golden Mercedes, the sleek Nissans, and the elegant lines of this year's Infinity. The looming red Dodge Ram logo towered above guests with booming neon brilliance.
The atmosphere in the balcony area was austere but inviting with its black leather couches, high top tables and chromed bar stools. The sleek bar was adorned with simple black and white industrial paintings. Somewhat incongruous, were two pristinely cropped glass vases of Day Lilies tall and elegantly flanking the entry. Their color and delicacy somewhat out of place in the sterile surroundings, and yet the perfect touch to describe the BMW driving machine, business and beauty combined.
Hesitantly descending onto the exhibit floor, back into the rushing crowds, propelled without conscious to the Volkswagen Beetle display. Hatch back thrown open, with plates proclaiming "THE BEETLE" peering through the opening the viewers attention is caught by the thunder of music and the rocking of the car to its rhythms. The sign says, "CAREOKE" and two young adolescent young men are seated in the car, watching their reflections projected on a screen before them as they sing along with the words to the Bohemian Rhapsody, experiencing their own personal, "Night at the Roxbury." An unbelievably unique idea! The most inventive draw on the entire floor.
The finale though was the Jaguar display. A photographers dream opportunity to capture the grandeur of the 2007 EXP rotating slowly in front of a highly charged video of the car in action. The resulting photos were by far the most reminiscent of the event. Blending digitally as one, reality merged with the projected image giving the appearance of emerging from a lighted tunnel being pursued by a projected counterpart on the screen. Phenomenal!
All senses awakened, fantasies fulfilled, visitors slowly move to the exits, lingering to caress one last icy cold fender. Fully aware of having viewed man's attempt to attain perfection. The bitter sweet taste of change in the air, aware that for this moment in time, beauty is locked on the floors of the exhibit hall, not to be altered by gas prices, the economy or war. Man's fascination with the automobile graphically realized for at least one more year.