Over the course of a career, a race car driver can amass dozens of fire suits.

In a exhibit titled “Daytona Vortex”, seven time NASCAR Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson has had one of those fire suits turned into a piece of art.

In 2006 Johnson won the Daytona 500 and it is that fire suit that has been torn apart to create some unique artwork commissioned by Johnson and created by suspension artist E.V. Day.

The exhibit will be on display at The Mint Museum in Charlotte, North Carolina until June 5, 2022.

Day spoke on his creations saying, “it celebrates the power and heroism of humankind’s innovation.  Tectonically the language of the piece highlights the friction between man and machine — softness of the highly tailored fabric to the rigid structure of the hardware. It may seem that these forces are at odds, but they are interdependent on one another.”

Chief curator and curator of contemporary art at The Mint Dr. Jen Sudul Edwards spoke on the exhibit saying, “like “Transporter”, “Daytona Vortex” is visually stunning and conceptually powerful as it pushes us to rethink ideas around gender, dress, social interactions, expectations and popular culture.  It’s also a poignant reconsideration of sports heroes like Jimmie Johnson and the tension that must be maintained between the physical and intellectual, assurances and risk, in order to succeed.” 

Feature photo credit: Jimmie Johnson’s Twitter page