Missed It!!! Wait Till Next Year - 2018 EyesOn Design “Design Inspiration & Influences” June 17, 2018, Edsel Ford's Place
2018 EyesOn Design
“Design Inspiration & Influences”
By Steve Purdy
The Auto Channel
The lush, expansive lawns of the Eleanor and Edsel Ford House in Grosse Pointe Shores, just 9 miles upstream from downtown Detroit, make a perfect venue for this auspicious show - always on Father’s Day. Gates open mid-morning as throngs of car buffs, design enthusiasts and families stream onto the show field to become immersed in the automotive aesthetic. EyesOn Design has a well-deserved reputation for creating some of the most unusual and entertaining displays of any show in the world.
Thanks to Ford, Chrysler and GM design bosses of 1987 (Jack Telnack, Bob Gale and Chuck Jordon) along with Dr. Philip Hessburg, founder of the Detroit Institute of Ophthalmology and a bunch of dedicated volunteers, we’ve spent our Father’s Days for most of the last 30 years enjoying these eclectic gatherings of special automobiles and other things vehicular.
The show is built around classes conceived by experts in, and enthusiasts for, design. Much like a “Concours d’Elegance’ vehicles participate by invitation and the invitations go to those that fit particular themes. Unlike a Concours, the vehicles need not be pristine, rare or expensive. Rather, this show celebrates “design” with vehicles exemplifying the defined themes.
This year’s features include: “Runways to Roadways” an experiential display showcasing the influence WWII aircraft had on post-war automobile design – think fins, bullet noses and sweeping lines; displays of vehicles influenced by Art Deco and Mid-Century Modernism movements with automobiles and furniture; Wooden Speed Boats; 100 Years of Chevrolet Trucks; Traditional Custom Cars; Raymond Loewy’s Avanti; European Luxury Cars; Race-Inspired Aerodynamics; Military Derived Vehicles; Classic Era Designs; and a bunch more. They have defined 30 classes plus planned a couple dozen special displays.
Another element of the show is the presentation of a Lifetime Achievement Award for an accomplished designer. This year’s honoree is Ed Welburn who retired from his post as GM VP of Design a few years ago after 44 years with the company. Welburn had a hand in everything from Corvettes to the Oldsmobile Aerotech to the universally-acclaimed Buick Avista concept car. He is being called “the man who brought beauty back to GM” as he presided over that company’s huge portfolio of products worldwide. Not only was he a talented and intuitive designer but he masterfully managed the complexity of GM’s diverse, international design resources.
The Detroit Institute of Ophthalmology became a part of the Henry Ford Health Center some years ago and proceeds from the event are used for support services for visually impaired people and to fund high-end research into such projects as “The Eye and the Chip” conferences looking into technological solutions for the visually challenged. EyesOn Design always includes a team of visually impaired judges who use their other senses to evaluate the cars and usually come up with the same decisions as the sighted judges.
Find all the details at www.eyesondesign.org
We expect it to be hot and sunny, as are most Father’s Days, but don't let that deter you from one of the best car shows anywhere. In fact, it has been named fourth best in the country, and that’s an impressive accolade. Admission is $25. Gates open at 10AM with pass in review around noon.
I’ll expect to see you all there...tell them “Steve from The Auto Channel sent me”.
© Steve Purdy, Shunpiker Productions, All Rights Reserved