Pebble Beach Book Launch Party

The long awaited book, Maestro: Bill Mitchell and the Iconic Cars of GM Styling by Roy Lonberger, was officially presented as a six volume prototype August 11 during AutoWeek at the Pebble Beach home of Tex Otto (automobile enthusiast and collector).  Over one hundred guests attended the event and cocktail party including Wayne Cherry (retired VP Design, GM and designer of the Cadillac Sixteen), Peter Brock (designer of the Stingray and Shelby Cobra Daytona), Ken Eberts (creator of the AFAS), and Tim McGrane (executive director of the Blackhawk Museum).  Additional guest included GM & Ford car designers, AFAS artists, journalists, collectors, and family and friends.

Roy Lonberger comments at the party:

"My book originated with a request by GM to travel to Detroit to be interviewed at the GM Heritage Center about my years working for Bill Mitchell.  The interview was in 2011.  A year later, I decided to write about the interview for Dean’s Garage.  Afterwards, the interview was enlarged into a book about Mitchell.  Working directly with (and licensed by) GM, I have had unprecedented open access to top secret information, pictures, and internal communication.  As I gathered all of this information, it became apparent to me that many people had different impressions of Mitchell.  So I decided to turn the book into a compendium of articles and chapters written by various designers and esteemed personalities who knew and worked with Mitchell.  The result is a never before seen image of the complete man as a designer, leader, and manager.  That is why the book is so compelling. It is also a subset of the larger story that under Mitchell (and his predecessor Harley Earl), GM Styling Section became the very first industrial design department used inside industry, as a way of creating customer appeal for future sales.  Today, the entire auto design world owes their genesis to Harley Earl and Bill Mitchell."

"The original 84 contributors included all of the four succeeding VPs of Design (Ed Welburn, Wayne Cherry, Chuck Jordan, and Irv Rybicki); a foreword by Peter de Lorenzo (The AutoExtremist); a chapter from many of the chief designers during the period 1958-1977; independent design offices (including ItalDesign, Giorgetto Giugiaro, Leonardo Fioravanti, Chris Bangle, Mike Robinson of Bertone, and Shane Baxley of Breaking Custom Design); an article by the dean of Corvette Karl Ludvigsen; and the racing world (Jim Hall, James Musser, and Sir Stirling Moss)."  

"Additionally, a world class exhibition of designer sketches, clay models, and photographs (most of which have never been seen before).  Included is an extremely rare collection of all of Jim Hall’s Chaparrals, photos taken by Roy D. Query, who for twenty-five years was the head of photography for Automobile Quarterly.  And also, many photos (including the cover) by world famous studio photographer Michael Furman (who prepared the books for Ralph Lauren, Dr. Frederick Simeone, and Peter Mullin).  Additionally, dramatic photography was created specifically for the book by Carol Johanson and Dave Koontz.  Lastly, Joe Bortz provided open access to his museum of GM dream cars."