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WATCH: Highlights and Interview with Artist and Designer Camilo Pardo

WATCH: Interviews with Matt D'Andria, Ryan Brogan and Jesse Cory



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National News / Automotive

Monday, 19 September, 2011 8:45 PM

Camilo Pardo hosts Fuel Injected art and design exhibition in Beverly Hills


Cleo Patricia Marguerita Shelby (Carroll Shelby's wife) with Camilo Pardo at his Fuel Injected art and design exhibition in Beverly Hills, Calif. on Sept. 17, 2011.


by Jason Rzucidlo



BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. -- Automotive designer and artist Camilo Pardo hosted his first-ever art and design exhibition on the west coast on Saturday evening. The event, titled "Fuel Injected LA," took place on the rooftop of the beautiful Thompson Hotel in Beverly Hills, Calif. Pardo is recognized for bringing back the iconic Ford GT40. He drove his sportscar from Detroit to Los Angeles just to hold the special event. The designer and artist showed off 35 of his original paintings and put them up for sale.

The artist and automotive designer currently operates an art studio in downtown Detroit. Pardo is considering to open another art studio in Los Angeles for use during the winter months.

"It's my third summer that I've driven from Detroit to California," Pardo said in an exclusive interview. "What I do is hit a couple of track events at Miller Motorsports Park, go to Pebble Beach and see the Concours and then drive down to LA. Because I do these events, it could take a couple of weeks to get here. I like Napa and going up to see my friends and have a little wine. This feels great because the effort behind this was very strong. We grew from a show that we did in Detroit with 323East. We thought, 'Why don't we take all of this energy and put it in LA.' Take the work that we had out there, make some new prints, recover the pieces that were already sold and find a venue."

Pardo and Shelby have a long history of working together. "He's a great guy, wonderful friend, and a fabulous artist," Shelby said. Cleo Patricia Marguerita Shelby (Carroll Shelby's wife) was in attendance at the event.

"My friends out here in California said, 'Fantastic, we'll look for a spot,'" he added. "This place was available, we're at the Thompson Hotel in Beverly Hills, we're on the rooftop with a swimming pool. It was a challenging spot because it didn't have any walls. That gave a real interesting effect to all of the paintings because they look like they're floating. They're either on the glass or on the structures that are already here. Some of these pieces date back to 1990. They are representations of watercolor, oil, acrylic, many different mediums and silk screen. Some of these paintings can take up to a couple of years. They just sit in my studio and I revisit them to get them the way I want them to be."

He led the development of the GT40 concept. In 2005, the GT was produced in limited quantities. Less than 5,000 were made and they continue to be highly sought after by celebrities and car lovers around the world.

"It was great to get to work with Carroll and get to know Carroll," Pardo explained. "I met him during the Ford GT development. I got to meet Cleo, his wife. It was really cool to see them at the race tracks and being part of delivering the car with Carroll Shelby and being on stage, answering questions and doing autographs. It's really something that's kind of hard to believe. It's kind of a rock star kind of feel to it. I have a studio in Detroit where I've created all of this art. It's a very productive studio and I've had it for a long time. It's geared up quite well. The idea would be great of having a studio out here in California and keep the studio in Detroit and work back and forth. Some of the winter months in Detroit are very challenging. I'd much rather be out here."

His artwork is described as a mix of pop, abstract and industrial rendering traditions. Some of his pieces incorporate familiar brands and logos such as Target and Marlboro. Pardo's paintings were seen in Road & Track Magazine, on the walls of the Detroit Institute of Arts and on the stage at the Paris Motor Show.

"I have a lot of friends here and this was kind of the kickoff to exploring the idea of having a studio in southern California," he added. "It's really great to see a lot of people from Detroit here. People flew out to come here and see the opening. It's great to see my friends from California. I feel very much at home here. I don't think it could be much better than this. There's 35 pieces here. They're very well lit. The place is beautiful. We're up high, you can see all of Cali from Beverly Hills. I've got my Ford GT here. It feels right at home."

The most expensive painting was titled Alonso and it came with a price tag of $8,500. The least expensive pieces were Salt Flat Iron and the series of Her Targets, both of which cost $600 each. Some of the paintings were original pieces while others were reproductions.

"The show is hosted by Adam Carolla and a guy named Sandy Ganz," said Matthew D'Andria, producer of Adam Carolla's Carcast podcast and CEO of "It's very similar to a radio show. What we do is have guys from all over the car industry and people that are into cars and celebrities and guests. We had Camilo who designed the beautiful Ford GT. He came down and talked about designing the car and its history of it and art. He invited us out to this event. Some of the other guests we've had are Jay Leno, Billy Gibbons from ZZ Top, Kenny Wayne Shepherd. We've had some great car guys from all walks of life. Because this is a podcast show, we don't stop. We do a show every week. It's roughly 50 shows a week per year."

Some of the proceeds from the event will benefit the Carroll Shelby Foundation, which helps families and medical professionals overcome life-threatening health issues that affect children worldwide and promotes the importance of organ donation.

"We work with lots of artists in the gallery," said Ryan Brogan, a partner of 323East Gallery and 1xRun. "Typically, we do more pop work, pop surrealism if you want to put genres around the art that we do. Because it is a Detroit-based gallery, you have somebody like Camilo, who is like a local genius. He's kind of moved into fine art and it is a perfect relationship for us. I think we can take what we do in Detroit and bring a lot of that to places like LA and Miami and New York. He's moved away from designing supercars and now becoming an artist. He needs to work with people like us instead of just in the auto world. Everything is for sale. The idea is also to establish a future collector base who might not want to buy now, who might want to do private commissions."

323East Gallery and 1xRun organized the Fuel Injected LA event along with assistance from The End Game Los Angeles.

"We worked with Mark McGuinness, who is a filmmaker, who is working on a documentary about Camilo for many years," said Jesse Cory, a partner of 323 East Gallery and 1xRun. "Mark's in LA and we did a show for Camilo in Detroit in May. We kind of took that energy and bundled it up and brought it up to LA. We have a whole selection of different mediums of artwork here. Camilo has been painting GTs and Mustangs and Ferraris for years. We have a full collection of reproductions and prints here. He creates a silkscreen and applies it to found objects. It could be any type of object like wood, closet doors, a railroad sign to create original artwork."

For more information about Camilo Pardo, visit his website at

Related Story: 2010 Designer's Night Party at Camilo Pardo's Art Studio in downtown Detroit



A model stands in front of one of Camilo Pardo's paintings.



Attendees are mingling at the art and design exhibition.



It took place on the rooftop of the Thompson Hotel in Beverly Hills, Calif.



Camilo Pardo's Her Targets series of paintings



The Ford GT and Marlboro models were on hand for photographs.


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Unauthorized duplication or use of Text, Photos, Videos, Site Template, Graphics and or Site Design is Prohibited by Federal and International laws. See our Notice/Disclaimer.