American Dreaming Exhibit Documentary Film Teaser

American Dreaming Teaser from FREE AGE on Vimeo.


American Dreaming Exhibition Website

They are seeking contributions to finance the Documentary.

April 17–May 2, 2015

Detroit’s Golden Age of Automotive Design


I received this from Robert Edwards and Bill Porter:
Thank you for plugging the exhibit. It is an amazing amount of work trying to pull this off in such a short time. I spent most of yesterday with a couple of your friends from GM; Roger Hughet and Galen Wickersham. There will be close to 100 artworks and styling models on display. All of the attached images will be in the show. There will be approximately 100 total works, including Bill Schmidt’s Ford Futura scale model on loan from The Henry Ford Museum. I am still soliciting invitations to exhibit; We want this to be the best exhibit possible. In the past, many shows have included student or portfolio work and advertising illustrations. However, this will be only design studio work from the 1946-1973 period. It is much more aligned with the “Designing an Icon” show on the artwork of the “Muscle-Car” era that Bill Porter put together several years ago.


LTUWhere: The gallery of the University Technology and Learning Center, Lawrence Technological University

When: Opening Reception: Friday April 17, 4–8 pm

Panel Discussion: Wednesday, April 29, 7 pm

Architecture Auditorium (A200)—Retired automotive designers and art historians discuss the era, the art and it’s place in American art history.

For every vintage or classic car we admire, there was an artist who worked in small groups in the car companies’ design studios who dreamed, designed and drew that car with pencil and paper. Company policy mandated preliminary artwork be destroyed after the final designs were selected for production, so the vast majority of this artwork has disappeared. This exhibition is an opportunity to see the rare automotive artworks created in Detroit and their contribution to American culture.

This exhibit of original automotive concept art is the subject of a documentary film, “American Dreaming” scheduled to be released in 2016. Private collectors nationwide have lent artworks for this exhibition. Exhibition runs from April 17 – May 2, 2015.

The exhibit is open to the public daily from Noon–5 p.m. in the gallery of the University Technology and Learning Center.


“Cars today are almost the exact equivalent of the great Gothic cathedrals—the supreme creation of an era, conceived with passion by unknown artists.” 


Lawrence Technological University
21000 West 10 Mile Road, Southfield, MI 48075
(248) 204-4000

Wayne-Kady-1964 Roger-Hughet-Oldsmobile-Toranado-1968- Charles-Balogh-1953-Ford-&-UFOs Bill-Robinson-1951-Packard-roadster

  1. Stan Mott

    It was fun to see designs by Bernie Smith, who sat behind me in the Olds studio in 1954-55. In the old Research Building downtown Detroit, when during 12-hour work days 7-days a week we’d launch giant paper gliders out the 9th story windows…to wake up our brains and churn the creative juices. We never looked down to see who they hit. Ah, youth…

  2. This documentary looks great! I will share the clip with my dad, Norbert Ostrowski. He occasionally joins the other designers for coffee. As a child of a “Automotive Stylist” it is exciting to watch the history being collected and preserved about my dad’s time in the industry. Thank you for sharing this on your page so others can connect!

  3. Kay Grubola

    A minor correction to your reference to the “Designing an Icon” exhibition. While I was Artistic Director and Curator of the Louisville Visual Art Association I approached Bill Porter about my idea for an exhibit of original automotive concept drawings. When he said he would contact some of his fellow designers about sharing their drawings with me I knew I would get a good response. Bill is held in such high regard by his colleagues that they trusted me to put together a show of which they could be proud. His assistance in putting together the exhibit was invaluable. It was an honor to curate “Designing an Icon” and I look forward to seeing “American Dreaming”!

    Kay Grubola

  4. We hope to stop by and see the “American Dreaming” Exhibition at Lawrence Tech on our way to set-up our Fisher Body Craftsman’s Guild exhibition in Salt Lake City. We have about 30 Guild models lined up for display and 18 Guildsmen committed to the event at the Great Salt Lake XXV International Scale Vehicle Model Championship and Convention. April 30 – May 3, 2015. Sheraton SLC Hotel. Top Guild National Scholarship models include those made by Warren Bakken 1953, Will Keagy 1953, Gary Graham 1954, John Sparnicht 1958/59, Newell Bringhurst 1960, Ron Will 1961, the Simone Brothers (1960, 1961 and 1962), George Prentice 1965, Geza Lozci 1965, Bob Lawhn 1967. Bill Michalak and Ron Konopka will be there as Honorary Guildsmen.
    Our best regards to the folks at Cosi. John and Jeanie Jacobus

  5. Bud Magaldi

    It was great seeing all the wonderful works of art and I do mean ART, as these sketches and renderings although useful to there respective companies at the time, have and should now be considered “Fine Art”, as they are a joy to the eye and have a great history in their DNA….

  6. Phil Payne

    Melissa Belevender’s reference to her dad, Norbert Ostrowski, as an “Automobile Stylist” understates his true stature as a designer in the automobile industry. Norbert was an “Automobile Stylist” at GM before our design paths converged at AMC. He was in one of my departments and I considered myself lucky to have had him as part of the team, and still do.
    His talents, and patience, are immense.

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