Don’t Wash Me

The picture of a dirty car covered in dust from the a wintry sand storm, with the odd “wash me please” message inscribed on a window by a passer-by, might not seem appealing to most. However, Advantage Y&R in partnership with the City of Windhoek held an alternative art exhibition titled, “Don’t Wash Me” in light of current water shortages. The focus is on saving water.
The alternative art exhibition showcases nine pieces of dusty cars’ rear windows as a canvas. Using only dust, the artists made their own sketches comprising beautiful typography with a three dimensional touch to images of barren land bereft of water. “Our behaviours are rooted in our beliefs. An example is the commonly held belief that your car must be spotless and shiny to carry a sense of status. If your car is dirty you don’t have self-respect. Or you’re poor” Advantage Y&R said.
The sketches on the cars all deal with the theme of water and saving water. The exhibition is not only striking for its fine art and incredible attention to detail, the overall picture is also aesthetic and attractive, much more than a mere illustration, a real work of art instead. The artwork on these nine cars all turned out to be real head turners.
If you are a fanatic of all things nostalgic and vintage, classics such as the Chevrolet Master 1938 and the Mercedes 500SL 1983, you will appreciate the skill of the artists. Their images adorn the showroom with effortless je ne sais quoi,
This exhibition challenges all ideas that are culturally engrained but not conducive to sustainability. A belief that perhaps, even dusty cars can be beautiful, and in doing so, challenges Namibians to change their behaviour and stop washing their cars and wasting water.
Speaking at the exhibition, veteran Namibian artist, Don Stevenson, said “It is predicted that before the end of this year all dams supplying water to the central areas will be dry. Existing supply sources are very vulnerable to climatic conditions and hence heavily affected by the persistent drought.”

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