Exhibit Features More Than 200 Pieces of Artwork, Including Customized 1:18 Scale Hot Wheels® Volkswagen Buses to Benefit the Children Affected by AIDS Foundation
LOS ANGELES (April 1, 2008) - TOYS, a pop surrealist exhibit featuring a collection of artwork inspired by classic toy brands, opens today and includes a collection of artwork that pays tribute to the 40th anniversary of Hot Wheels® cars. More than 40 of the most famous pop surrealist artists from around the globe created customized 1:18 scale Hot Wheels® Volkswagen buses. Along with the Hot Wheels® inspired pieces, the exhibit also features canvas paintings and other artwork inspired by generations of children's classic toys.
"Gallery 1988 has partnered with many notable artists and has hosted several exhibits focused on pop culture, but I've been completely blown-away by the level of creativity these artists have reached with the customized Hot Wheels VW buses," said Jensen Karp, director of the Los Angeles Gallery 1988. "We're pleased to be exhibiting an artwork collection that pays tribute to Hot Wheels' heritage and the brand's incredible 40-year milestone."
More than 40 of the most notable artists, including Greg Simkins, Jon Burgerman and Bwana Spoons, were given white, 1:18 scale die-cast Hot Wheels® Volkswagen buses to customize for the exhibit. Each Volkswagen bus will be individually displayed and priced between $300 and $5,500.
A portion of the proceeds from the custom-designed Hot Wheels® VW buses, provided by Volkswagen, will be donated to the Children Affected by AIDS Foundation. In addition to the customized VW buses, original artwork inspired by the 40th anniversary of Hot Wheels®, created by artists like David Horvath and husband/wife team, Brandt Peters and Kathie Olivias, also will be showcased at the exhibit.
"This exhibit exemplifies how the magic of toys not only inspire us at a young age, but remain a form of inspiration in our adult years," said Richard Dickson, senior vice president, Marketing, Media & Entertainment Worldwide, Mattel Brands. "Mattel is home to some of the most popular and beloved toy brands and we're honored to have the 40th anniversary of Hot Wheels commemorated through this one-of-kind custom art form."
"Since 1968, Hot Wheels has inspired automotive trends and revolutionized the toy industry by delivering speed, power, performance and attitude with every die-cast car," said Tim Kilpin, GM and senior vice president, Boys & Entertainment, Mattel Brands. "As we celebrate our 40th anniversary, we're extremely proud that the brand continues to bring excitement and inspiration to Hot Wheels fans of all ages."
TOYS will be open to the public until April 25, 2008. For Gallery 1988 location and showroom hours, please visit www.gallery1988.com.
About the Hot Wheels® Brand
Hot Wheels® cars revolutionized boys' toys in 1968 with an original line of super-fast, customized cars built for speed, power, performance and attitude. Now, 40 years later, Hot Wheels® is a global lifestyle brand that represents the coolest cars imaginable in scales from miniature to full-size. Hot Wheels® cars are also popular collectibles for adults and each year, introduces a new line-up of innovative vehicles, track sets and playsets.
For information on Hot Wheels® and its 40th anniversary activities, cruise over to www.hotwheels.com/40th.
About Gallery 1988
Gallery 1988 has quickly become one of the world's most talked about art galleries. Opened in 2004, the gallery has established a reputation as the place to see amazing artwork and be seen. Openings at the gallery have seen upwards of 1500 people attending in one night, including celebrities such as Jessica Alba, Nicole Richie, Good Charlotte, DJ AM, Paul Wall, She Wants Revenge, Samuel L. Jackson, Jonah Hill, Linkin Park and Joss Whedon admiring the walls. An art show from 2007, "Crazy 4 Cult" received worldwide press (faced by the show's hosts filmmakers Kevin Smith and Scott Mosier) and 1,000,000 website hits on the day of the opening reception. The gallery has been featured in dozens of magazines including US Weekly, Jutxapoz, JANE, COMPLEX, The Los Angeles Times, FHM, The Washington Post, and The National Post. The gallery has also received press from the G4 network, KTLA, KTTV, CNN.com, MSNBC.com, KROQ, Power 106 and publications in the United Kingdom, Japan, Sweden, Germany and Italy. The gallery has also created unprecedented partnerships with corporations like The Walt Disney Company, Capcom and Mattel to produce art shows inspired by their products and history. During these shows, Gallery 1988 has helped nurture and create a collective of artists who call 1988 their "homebase," allowing collectors to purchase affordable artwork from art stars on the rise, before their price range skyrockets. In 2007, Gallery 1988 opened its second location in San Francisco, creating another groundbreaking venue for emerging young artists and ambitious collectors to meet.
Mattel, Inc., (NYSE: MAT, www.mattel.com) is the worldwide leader in the design, manufacture and marketing of toys and family products. The Mattel family is comprised of such best-selling brands as Barbie®, the most popular fashion doll ever introduced, Hot Wheels®, Matchbox®, American Girl®, Radica® and Tyco® R/C, as well as Fisher-Price® brands, including Little People®, Power Wheels® and a wide array of entertainment-inspired toy lines. Mattel is recognized as one of 2008's "100 Best Companies to Work For" by FORTUNE Magazine and among the 100 Most Trustworthy U.S. Companies by Forbes Magazine. Committed to ethical manufacturing sustainable business practices, Mattel marked a 10-year milestone in 2007 for its Global Manufacturing Principles. With worldwide headquarters in El Segundo, Calif., Mattel employs more than 30,000 people in 43 countries and territories and sells products in more than 150 nations. Mattel's vision is to be the world's premier toy brands -- today and tomorrow.
About Volkswagen of America
Founded in 1955, Volkswagen of America, Inc. is headquartered in Auburn Hills, Michigan. It is a subsidiary of Volkswagen AG, headquartered in Wolfsburg, Germany. Volkswagen is one of the world's largest producers of passenger cars and Europe's largest automaker. Volkswagen sells the Rabbit, New Beetle, New Beetle convertible, GTI, Jetta, GLI, Passat, Passat wagon, Eos, and Touareg through approximately 600 independent U.S. dealers. Visit Volkswagen of America online at vw.com.
About Children Affected by AIDS Foundation
Worldwide there are more than 40 million people infected with HIV and more than 15 million children orphaned by AIDS. The number of children affected by AIDS in the U.S. alone is currently estimated at nearly 125,000. The Children Affected by AIDS Foundation was founded in Los Angeles in 1993 by Joe Cristina, a Mattel, Inc. executive whose desire to help children was inspired by the outpouring of support he received when he disclosed his own HIV-positive status. The Children Affected by AIDS Foundation is the only organization solely devoted to providing social, educational, recreational and other critical support programs to vulnerable children impacted by HIV/AIDS in the U.S. and other countries. CAAF accomplishes its mission domestically and abroad through four programs including domestic grant making, domestic initiatives, international grant making and international initiatives.
Volkswagen of America