Anybody else out there miss the days of the automotive co-star? You grown and sexy folk out there know what we mean; the four-wheeled cultural icons like KITT, The Mystery Machine – even that racist bastard the General Lee. Aside from clunky robots, it seems Hollywood’s penchant for whips worthy of the credit reel have been towed off to the great big impound lot in the sky. Shit, we don’t even get a real Batmobile anymore. What’s really good, Alfred?
Enter Jaguar’s “Alive’”campaign; an early move in what looks to be a tire-smoking, traction defying U-turn from the brand’s former keep-calm-and-motor-on mentality. With their current R-line boasting more horsepower than 2 Chainz, and the potential Porsche-killer F-Type on the horizon, it’s evident that these British cats have gotten back in touch with their racing DNA. Word to Dr. Henry Louis Gates Jr.
So what do you do to celebrate the modern day re-invigoration of your automotive brand? Naturally, you tap Brooklyn’s own Mr. Kaves to turn your most race-worthy model (the XK-R) into a living canvas. Moving his graffiti talents “from train cars to Jaguars”, Kaves – who himself rocks the marque’s flagship XJL – tagged himself into the project without delay. “It’s just incredible to be able to do something like this,” he remarked. “A lot of people perceive [Jaguar] as all stuffy and buttoned-up, when in fact they build racecars. Even their luxury models are track-worthy. Now they have an art car, which might help change how people look at them.”
To add to the pressure of a limited eight-hour work window, Kaves also completed much of the XK-R’s skinning under the watchful eye of its designer, Ian Callum. “Here you have the man who came up with this shape,” said Kaves. “And he’s totally cool with what I’m doing to it.” Perhaps aiding that validation was the fact that Callum got his own artistic start as an air-brusher. After an expert tutorial on the modern-day spray can, he himself completed the mural by signing the rear bumper.
So what modern day hero would rock a sport-coupe emblazoned with such a Technicolor display of urban artwork? We’re not really sure; maybe a life-sized version of that Sprite doll, who rides around gettin’ it in towns full of Romney Votes. Or perhaps a Bond villain, tasked with unleashing Daniel Craig’s wild side. Either way, we’d watch. Scratch that – Jaguar, we see you! And we’re ready for prime time.