In 1989, Ken Done was commissioned to paint a BMW ArtCar.
As a creator of one of these unique pieces, he joined an elite group of 13 artists, which includes:
Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein, Frank Stella and Robert Rauschenberg.
“ Ken Done has made his racing car as optimistic and colourful as his pictures. The style he has chosen is intended on the one hand to express the fascinating appeal of the M3 as a fast and dynamic automobile, while on the other hand it is to be typically Australian. This is why Done intentionally chose an abstract rendition of parrots and parrot fish: 'Both are beautiful and move at fantastic speed. I wanted my Art Car to convey the same impression.'' - BMW Art Car Collection, Press Release, Germany, 1993
“ If I make a painting, it should be seen for what it's set out to do too. A lot of the things that I do, it's not all art. Some of it's design, some of it's illustration, some of it's graphics, some of it's concept, some of it's business and some of it, hopefully, is art.” ~ Ken Done
http:// www.youtube.com/watch?v =oYreA7dbuzY The Chaser The Ken Done Code What Is Art? How does it make you feel? What do you think of Ken Done as an artist? His art work?
It began with a small run of t-shirts printed with a beautifully simple, bold drawing of Sydney Harbour. This original image caught the attention of Sydneysiders and visitors alike and has gone on to become an icon of Sydney, and an icon of Done. Brilliant colour and unique art-based prints inspire the contemporary Done Art and Design brand, which today includes swimwear, clothing, accessories, kidswear and homewares. Inspired by the original art of Ken Done, the garment designs of Judy Done (Ken's wife) continue the original 'Art to Wear' concept - innovative use of colour, shapes and Australian themes create an elegant and inspired range of clothing. In 1993, Done Art and Design won the Fashion Industries of Australia's Grand Award for its blend of casually sophisticated garments and high quality fabrics. With the addition of Ken and Judy's children, Camilla and Oscar, Done Art and Design continues to develop and expand, promoting Australian art and design to a world-wide audience.
He was appointed Ambassador through his involvement with UNICEF when he designed the exterior of the United Nations and UNICEF Pavillion at Expo '88 in Brisbane. In almost ten years as an Ambassador for UNICEF, he has contributed vigorously and generously to both advocacy and fundraising. He has an extensive knowledge of UNICEF's work and has made field trips to both Zimbabwe and Vietnam.
'It was a great challenge to be invited by the director, Terence Measham, to create an entire art and design concept for the restaurant. It was a wonderful opportunity to bring light and colour to a fairly dull space and envelope people in the feeling of a glowing, growing garden.' Ken Done, Sydney 1999 The radiant hues of luxuriant foliage and perfect sky created a painting which both enhanced and defined the architectural space. Set within the highly technological exhibits and vistas of the museum, the garden theme reflected the human scale of the visitor. To complement and complete the scheme, Done painted the furnishings of the restaurant, created a trio of scultptural vases and designed a range of ceramics, manchester, staff uniforms and finishing touches such as wine bottle labels, menu covers and stationery. Powerhouse Museum UNICEF
In 1988, Hanako, a fashion and lifestyle magazine for young working women in metropolitan Tokyo was launched. The Chairman of publishing company Magazine House, Mr Tatsuo Shimizu, personally selected Ken Done as the cover artist. His art would create a unique identity for the new magazine, bringing the colour and vibrancy of the southern hemisphere to the Japanese city. From its very first issue, the cover has featured an original artwork by Ken Done, in addition to the Done-designed logo. This extraordinary relationship has continued for over 15 years, with a new artwork being used every week on the Hanako, and the logo also used on Hanako West, a sister publication for the Osaka area.
In 1999, Ken Done was asked by Ric Birch, the Director of Ceremonies, to create the programs for the Opening and Closing Ceremonies of the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games.
At the time, Done said 'It's a fantastic job and it's a great challenge and also a great honour to be asked to do this. It's like being asked to run the 100m!'.
Done produced a series of original works which featured throughout the two beautiful volumes.
In addition to the program artwork Opal Reef was featured in the 'Deep Sea Dreaming' segment of the Olympic Opening Ceremony and an original painting of the medallists' bouquet of Australian native flowers against a backdrop of Sydney Harbour was reproduced as a poster and presented to each Olympic medallist.
Done donated half his fee from SOCOG to the Paralympic Games and the other half to UNICEF.
Life-sized fibreglass cows were decorated by various artists and placed in the streets, parks, arcades, buildings and foreshores of the city. The cows became a part of the city’s landscape, appearing in areas where people work, shop, eat and play.
"Although my original concept was to do a Blue and White Sydney Harbour Cow, on reflection I realised that all the other artists work I had seen had treated the cow as an object to put some kind of decorated pattern or design on, but I felt no one had treated the cow as the "artist". To this end, I simply turned the tail into a brush and I had the cow carry his, or her, own paint palette, and then topped our cow artist off with a classic artists’ beret”. Ken Done