“In 2018, while exhibiting my work at MCACN, a unique display caught my attention. It consisted of a Duster and 2 Road Runners—their bright paint and heavy body modifications made me think of the 'World of Wheels' style shows of the 70s and 80s, where cars like these would be on turntables. The idea for a painting began to develop, but it wasn't coming together...not yet. The next time I saw the cars was at the Mecum Indy auction in 2019. They had been part of Stephen Juliano's huge collection, which included an unbelievable display of original banners, signs, dealer color charts, parts, clothing, and more. It was like stepping back in time. Surrounded by the bold RTS marketing campaign, the ideas for a painting were all around me—now, how to organize them into one image?"- MICHAEL IRVINE
Warning: Almost Sold Out
“Everybody offers a car. Only Plymouth offers a system.” - PLYMOUTH 1970 AD CAMPAIGN
With his unique imaginative ability to tell a story in watercolor, Michael brings to life the excitement and exhilaration of seeing, hearing, test driving, and ultimately buying some of the hottest muscle cars that Plymouth's innovative and highly successful Rapid Transit System roadshow brought to dealerships in the early '70s.
In 1970, following quickly on the heels of the launch of Dodge's Scat Pack, Plymouth implemented The Rapid Transit System, a performance plan that included Plymouth's street cars, as well as the company's NASCAR, NHRA, and Trans Am racing endeavors. The idea was that all these cars were part of the same 'system' and that parts and know-how were now accessible to Plymouth owners wanting to get the most performance out of their muscle cars that their wallets would allow. And, it wasn't just an ad campaign ... dealerships were encouraged to create Rapid Transit System Centers, where they stocked cars in the most vivid colors, housing the biggest engines, and featuring the most aggressive wheel, tire, and rear-end gear ratios available. But Plymouth's most innovative promotional effort? The Rapid Transit Caravan.
The Caravan was a collection of new cars—a 'Cuda, Duster, and Road Runners—that were modified inside and out with eye-catching paint and body mods designed by Hot Wheels' Harry Bradley and finished by Roman's Chariot Shop, Byron Grenfell, and Styline Custom, under Bob Larivee's supervision. Adding to the excitement, it included vibrant banners, performance parts displays, big block engines, Superclinics hosted by race car drivers, and even real funny cars.
In this painting, Michael gives us a perfect day when during an era of exciting and innovative automotive marketing, Plymouth's Rapid Transit Caravan has drawn a crowd at the dealership. You can feel the energy as, with big smiles on their faces, the enthusiastic soon-to-be-new-car-owners ooh and ahh over Plymouths impressive offerings. Along with the Duster and both Road Runners that sparked his interest at MCACN (The Muscle Car and Corvette Nationals), Michael chose to include the stunning 'Cuda from the original Caravan, Don Pruhomme's 'Cuda funny car, and several stock versions of the cars being promoted. Bringing together the RTS cars of 1970 and '71, Michael created the ultimate "Caravan of Speed".
SPECIAL RELEASE COLLECTOR EDITION: A limited number of the reproductions (200 Limited Edition Prints) have been imprinted in the lower margin with Michael's "Caravan of Speed" Remarque, where he has painted the 'real' cars (GTX, 'Cuda, Road Runner, Duster, Sport Fury GT), replacing the black silhouettes of 'Plymouth Rapid Transit System' logo. Only the first 10 Gallery Edition Canvas orders will have the Prive Remarque printed on the right edge.
|ABOUT MICHAEL IRVINE'S REPRODUCTIONS||All reproductions are individually hand-signed/hand-numbered by artist Michael Irvine • Accompanied by signed/numbered Certificate(s) of Authenticity • Limited Edition Prints and Artist Proofs are embossed with Michael's Studio Seal.|
|Limited Edition Print||31" x 24" - Limited to 800. (Image size 26.38" x 18.5") 10pt satin finish, acid free, museum quality stock. Choice of available print number. Indicate top 2-3 choices below (eg #200/800). Last 3 digits of VIN numbers are popular.|
|◊ Collector Edition Print||— 200 of the Limited Edition Prints (above) released are being offered with Michael's "The Caravan of Speed" Printed Remarque + Special 8" x 10" signed art print.|
|Artist Proof with Single Custom Done-to-Order Remarque||31" x 24" - Only 20 total APs released. (Image size 26.38" x 18.5") 10pt satin finish, acid free, museum quality stock. Remarque is "custom, done-to-order" in pencil or painted in watercolor (your choice). Call/email Linda to discuss your Remarque.|
|Artist Proof with Double Custom Done-to-Order Remarques||31" x 24" - Only 20 total APs released. (Image size 26.38" x 18.5") 10pt satin finish, acid free, museum quality stock. Remarques are "custom, done-to-order" in pencil or painted in watercolor (your choice). Call/email Linda to discuss your Remarques.|
|Gallery Edition Canvas (All the detail—twice the size!)||51.25" x 36" - Limited to 50. Heavy weight, acid free, archival quality canvas. Specialty coating (see About Our Reproductions). North American orders are shipped stretched (gallery wrapped) & ready to hang. Int'l orders shipped rolled.|
|◊ Collector Edition Gallery Edition Canvas||— 10 of the Gallery Edition Canvases (above) released have Michael's "The Caravan of Speed" Prive Remarque on the right edge and come with the Special 8" x 10" signed art print.|
|Original Watercolor Painting(s)||Contact the Studio.|
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