Ibiza is not short on icons. There are the big international ones – DJs, models, nightclubs and the like. Then the natural world ones – Es Vedra, Ses Salines, the west coast sunset etcetera. However, there are icons that only a true local could recognise – flaó cheesecake, Tanit and the Podenco, Ibiza’s native dog. And then, in a class of its own, is the Renault 4. Yes, a car.
The Renault 4 (known across Spain as the Cuatro Latas – Four Tins) was first produced in France between 1962 and 1992. Its versatility made it one of the most popular cars ever produced, used extensively in urban settings as well as rural locales. In Ibiza it was always the car of the farmer but these days the Renault 4 has become a mark of nostalgic cool. Incidentally, it was artist Sandra de Keller’s first car and has been the trigger for a series now known as Renault 4 Life.
Cas Gasi owner, Margaret von Korff, first saw one of de Keller’s pieces at Macao Cafe around four years ago. She was immediately taken by the work, drawn to the whimsical carefree attitude and innovative use of mediums. Years later she saw this piece in a gallery and just had to have it. “It was meant to be,” Margaret explains. “I love how it represents a part of Ibiza – the Podencos are so proud and beautiful.” It now sits pride of place outside the upstairs suites, perfectly placed above a von Korff family antique chest.
De Keller was born in Switzerland and raised in Spain and Austria. Her mixed upbringing is another meaningful characteristic of the international culture of Ibiza, adding further significance to her work. She uses her own Renault 4 as a mobile studio, asking friends and passers by to pose in her back seat. She then sources old back doors and blows up the images to fit in the window frame. The result is a gorgeous love letter to an iconic car, her magical adopted home and a part of life in Ibiza that visitors rarely get to experience.
Photography by Sofia Gomez Fonzo.