As a result of a non-traditional partnership between the Chicagoland Speedway and the Department of Public Art for the City of Chicago, the artistic vision of local Chicago artist Steve Heyman, has been chosen as the paint scheme for the Chicagoland Speedway Ceremonial Car, a 2001 Dodge Intrepid. A Friday morning press conference at Daley Plaza was held to unveil the car which will be raffled to raise funds for the Buck Boys and Girls Club of Joliet and the Public Art Conservation Endowment. ?We are thrilled to have the art community join with us to create something unique and exciting that will make a mark on racing history and help benefit charities,? said Joie Chitwood, vice president and general manger of Chicagoland Speedway. Heyman, along with two other prominent Chicago artists, competed for the chance to have their work featured on the Speedway?s Ceremonial Car. The three artists were selected by the Public Art Program of Chicago and commissioned by Chicagoland Speedway to submit paint schemes on small-scale models. Heyman?s design was chosen for its unique look, vibrant colors and compelling message. ?It has been the city of Chicago?s pleasure to help Chicagoland Speedway with the selection and facilitation of their Ceremonial Car. We hope this groundbreaking project will allow a greater appreciation between the visual arts and the artistry of racing,? said Michael Lash, director of Public Art for Chicago. Heyman?s winning design features a metallic indigo primary color that fades throughout the car to a pearly silver. The primary color is accented by multi-colored circles interconnected with peach ribbons to create a look reminiscent of a molecular science project. Several of the circles contain large black pupils that resemble eyes and serve as a tribute to racing fans. ?It?s a chance for the fans to watch the car watch them back,? said Heyman when asked about the eye design. In addition, Heyman hid the outline of a razor blade on each side of the car?s lower body. ?The razor blades are a tool of the automotive painter?s trade and a nod to the guys who do this kind of thing every day?. There are a few other messages hidden throughout the car, but Heyman is not saying where. ?I hope people will find the messages on their own. That?s one of great things about art. The longer you look at something, the more you see.? The transfer of Heyman?s 27-color design to the Ceremonial Car took 230 man-hours donated by DuPont Automotive Finishes and Cars Collision Center of Naperville. The production required a six-step process where the car was sanded, disassembled, prepped and painted using Dupont's special urethane-based Chroma paint. After the car was reassembled, it was buffed and a final clear coat was applied. Heyman directed the DuPont and Cars Collision Center technicians in regard to design integrity throughout the process and was responsible for choosing the colors. ?This project has been a great experience, and one that I hope will initiate similar opportunities for other artists nationwide,? said Heyman. Along with being the ceremonial car for all racing events at Chicagoland Speedway, the car will also appear at the St. Patrick?s Day Parade on March 17th as well as other events in the Chicago metropolitan area throughout the year. During the month of June, a selection of the small-scale car models will be featured at the Museum of Contemporary Art along with the ceremonial car. Raffle tickets to win the Chicagoland Speedway Ceremonial Car may be purchased for $20 at all Chicagoland Speedway and Route 66 Raceway events, as well as at promotional events where the car is displayed. To have the Chicagoland Speedway Ceremonial Car appear at any event or activity, please contact Chicagoland Speedway?s public relations department at (815) 722-5500 for details. For ticket information call (815) 727-RACE or visit our website at
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