Design plaudits for Coventry University students in Jaguar E-Type 50th anniversary competition

Student news

Tuesday 26 July 2011

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A 21-year-old Automotive and Transport Design student from Coventry University has won first prize in a sculpture competition to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Jaguar E-Type – with second and third prizes also going to Coventry students.

Claudio Gianluca Barbato was one of forty students who entered the competition, which took place at the popular Pageant of Power historic motorsport event at Cholmondeley Castle in Cheshire.

Second in the competition was Junyi Qu, aged 24, from Weihai city in Shandong Province, China, and third was Borys Dabrowski, aged 21, from Goleniow in Poland. All three students have been awarded cash prizes.

A series of elimination panels was held to whittle down the entries to three students who the judging panel – made up of Peter Neumark, the chairman of Classic Motor Cars, Ian Callum, Jaguar design director and David Browne, honorary teaching fellow at the Coventry School of Art Design  – felt had created the best sculptures.

The winning sculptures were then unveiled to the crowds during the Cholmondeley Pageant of Power event last weekend.

Claudio Gianluca Barbato, said:

“The E-type Jaguar is one of the most beautiful cars of all time, a shape design so successful that its influence can still be seen in some of today's Grand Tourers.

“The competition to design a sculpture to celebrate its 50th anniversary grabbed my attention as something I wanted to do and I've thoroughly enjoyed working on it. I used computer design to try to sculpt the car's iconic proportions and voluptuous curves, spending time working with in front of an E-type, at the Jaguar Heritage museum. The elements I added to the sculpture were a shockwave and a trailing wake, to represent its impact and its legacy over the past half century, as well as the car's dynamic prowess and visual movement.”

Peter Neumark, chairman of Classic Motor Cars and sponsor of the competition, said:

“I am delighted with the outcome of the competition. Coventry University’s School of Art and Design has produced many talented automotive designers over the years who help shape the cars we drive today and of course tomorrow.
“All three final designs were fantastic and Claudio's winning piece truly encapsulates the spirit of the E-Type and is a fitting piece to celebrate its 50th Anniversary.”

Judge Ian Callum, design director at Jaguar Cars, said:

“All three models were exceptional in the expression of form and movement. For me, Claudio’s model presented the clearer statement of the simplicity, beauty and dynamics of the E-Type.”

In addition to the cash prize, Claudio’s winning sculpture will be cast and produced in five limited and numbered editions which will be auctioned to raise money for The Henry Surtees Foundation.

The foundation was set up after the death of Henry Surtees – son of Formula 1 World Champion John Surtees – during a Formula 2 race at Brands Hatch in 2009. It acts as a resource for young people up to the age of 18, providing advice and assistance and organising programmes of physical, educational and other activities.

For further information, please contact Alex Roache, Communications Assistant, Coventry University, on +44 (0)24 7679 5050 or email