May Cover 2010In the Fast Lane
High’s Allure of the Automobile exhibit is a car lover’s dream

By Collin Kelley

The High Museum of Art is in high gear with its new exhibit, The Allure of the Automobile, which includes 18 of the world’s rarest cars from the 1930s to the mid-1960s.

Bugatti, Duesenberg, Jaguar, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche and Ferrari are on view, as the exhibition traces the evolution of the motorcar, examining the contrasts between European and American design, and significant changes in automotive styling and engineering before and after World War II. There’s also a touch of star power as Clark Gable’s 1935 Duesenberg JN Roadster and Steve McQueen’s 1957 Jaguar XKSS Roadster are part of the show.

Guest curator Ken Gross said he drew upon his experience as the former executive director of the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles to source the cars for The Allure of the Automobile. “Created for the privileged few, these luxurious, custom-built automobiles embodied speed, style and elegance; they influenced and were influenced by contemporary art, architecture, fashion and design,” Gross said, noting that many of the automobiles are one-of-a-kind or were built largely by hand and in small numbers.

The High is hosting a number of events in May to coincide with the exhibition, which continues through June 20.


Classic Car Caravan and Showcase
Saturday, May 8, 10 a.m.–1 p.m.
Presented by the High Museum of Art and Midtown Alliance, watch 50 classic cars cruise down the Midtown Mile on Peachtree Street, and then park in front of the High. You’ll get a chance to get up close to these rare classic cars and talk to their owners. WYAY True Oldies radio station will broadcast live, and several viewing locations along Peachtree Street will offer special discounts and promotions.

Film Series – Races, Chases, and Classy Chassis: Cars on Screen
Outdoor screenings on the Sifly Piazza and in the Rich Auditorium begin at 8 p.m. Bring your own blanket or seating, but no outside alcohol. In the event of rain the film will be moved to the 400-seat Rich Theatre. Films include espionage thriller Ronin starring Robert De Niro and Jean Reno on Friday, May 7; screwball comedy It Happened One Night with Clark Gable and Claudette Colbert is Friday, May 14; Steve McQueen’s pulse-racing car chase through the streets of San Francisco in Bullitt on Friday, May 21; and the classic American Graffiti on Friday, May 28, which will also feature local car clubs will be on hand to show off vintage cars from the 1960s.

The High Museum of Art is at 1280 Peachtree St. For more details about the exhibition, visit.

Intown Classic Cars
Readers show-off their sweet rides

With the High Museum’s high octane exhibit in full swing, we asked INtown readers to submit photos of their classic cars. The first two phtos are Tim Spears’ 1954 Plymouth Belvedere, which he bought on eBay and had shipped across the country to his home in Avondale Estates. After significant restoration, much of it completed by Spears, his wife calls it his “mid-life Chrysler.” In the third photo, Tim Ryan took his mom’s 1966 VW Beetle and restored it to mint condition. In the fourth photo, Ryan Canavan of Brookhaven shows off the 1967 Mustang Convertible he found in an old barn in Asheville, NC. It only had 51,000 miles on it. He loves taking his daughters for ice cream in the car they have nicknamed, “Mustang Sally.” The last photo is of Chastain Park resident Patrick Dennis’ 1969 Rolls Royce Silver Shadow, which he found in a barn in West Virginia. Nicknamed “Gracie,” check out our e-Edition to read about Dennis’ find and how the restoration also led to the creation of new artwork.

Collin Kelley

Collin Kelley has been the editor of Atlanta Intown for two decades and has been a journalist and freelance writer for 35 years. He’s also an award-winning poet and novelist.