Hans Gugleot. Fastback body for BMW 2000 ti, ca. 1965.
Hans Gugleot. Fastback body for BMW 2000 ti, ca. 1965.

The erstaunliche Gugelot Car

by Job Smeets

Collectors of cars can be classified in several categories: the boaster, the investor, the driver, and the Korinthenkacker. The Korinthenkacker are the worst. They are looking for the perfect model, the perfect color, the perfect condition, the perfect provenance. I’m of that latter category ... as was, most likely, modernist Hans. 

Hans Gugelot died in 1965 at the age of forty-five. His professional life was dedicated to the design of industrial products. The SK 55 phonograph, known as the “Schneewittchensarg,” the Kodak Diaprojector, and the Braun logo are among his world-famous icons. Gugelot is also thought to be the pioneer of system design and conceived automotive concepts in collaboration with BMW. 

The story has it that in 1965 a Gugelot clay model made its way to Porsche: a two-seater with a removable targa roof and retractable headlights. Though Gugelot’s model was shunned by Porsche, when the first Porsche 914 rolled out of the factory in 1969, it showed a surprising similarity to Gugelot’s design.

Halt die Klappe!

Job Smeets is a Belgian sculpter and conceptual artist based in Antwerp, Belgium. He is the founder of Studio Job.

This text is an excerpt from Maharam Stories (Skira Rizzoli, 2015).