Dirty Car Window Art – Home-Made Masterpieces


There’s only time when your car windows are allowed to be so insanely dusty and dirty that you can’t even see out of them…and that’s when you’re accumulating that dirt in order to produce a masterpiece with your own hands! These pieces of art are not only hilarious, but really well done. Most of them were created by a man named Scott Wade, in Texas (of course). Check them out for yourself!

Dirty cars are rarely causes for great joy, but . . . Oh my goodness look at the face! That pup is so happy to be in a car with his people going somewhere. Where are they off to? Well, the whole family is there, so we may assume that we’re on the Great American Road Trip, or at least the Great American Family Vacation. Off to see the grandparents? Heading to the beach. This pupper cares not; he’s just happy to be along for the ride. We’d like to think the kids in the back seat are equally thrilled, but we’ve met kids before, so . . .

Dogs Playing Poker may refer to any of a series of paintings by lesser-known American artist Cassius Marcellus Coolidge, which appeared from 1894 until about 1910. They’re iconic, even if their creator isn’t, and for good reason: the irony and sense of humor is self-evident, and who doesn’t love puppies? Recreated with longing attention to detail on the back of someone’s Mini Cooper, there’s a whole additional layer of interpretation to this piece of Americana as drawn on a British car.

Did you notice that the white dog smoking the pipe is cheating? Maybe pay more attention next time.

Now, this . . . this is parenting done right. It appeals to our inner nerd with a wonderfully drawn likeness of contemporary Batman villain Bane. His fearsome visage and odd face mask really capture the parental wrath behind this statement. The message is crystal clear: this car ain’t going anywhere until it’s clean, no matter what you have to say about it.

Unless you’re Batman. We’re pretty sure Batman could get away with it, but then again Batman doesn’t often drive vehicles with Line-X covers on the back. Hmmm . . .

There’s something deep within every American that longs to hit the road and explore the highways and byways of this great nation on the Great American Road Trip. From the vast plains of the interior to the soaring peaks of the Rocky Mountains, there’s so much to explore.

And where better to start than with the deserts of the American Southwest? There’s a magic to that setting that’s difficult to capture in words, but apparently brilliantly expressed in dirty on the back of a Ford Escape. And escape is very much on our mind as we look at this one . . .

Driving should be a joyful, festive affair—which probably comes as news to those of you reading this while parked on the 405 during your morning commute. Seriously, maybe look into working from home for the sake of both your sanity and the planet. But hey, if you have to be stuck in traffic, you might as well remember something festive and fun—like mariachi music? The quick, distinctive instrumental riffs and vocal harmonies are some of the purest forms of musical joy, and the mere thought should be enough to keep you just this side of a road rage incident until you can get home.

You’ve seen this painting, both in its original state and in countless references and parodies like this one. The original, created around the year 1665 by Dutch artist Johannes Vermeer, is a classic due to its wonderfully muted colors and the beautifully captured expression on the young lady’s face. She’s not as famous as the Mona Lisa, but serious—take a look at her and try to figure out what she’s thinking. There’s a story there.

Here we see a version lovingly recreated on the back of a very dirty car, and the look on her face is just as arresting. That says something about her—and Vermeer—that we can only admire.

We’re all former (or maybe current; shouldn’t you be doing your homework?) 12-year-olds here. And we all love Batman—it’s one of humanity’s very few universal emotions. And if we’re all really honest with ourselves, part of the reason we love Batman is for the gadgets. Batarangs are just pure teenage mayhem in boomerang-esque form, but the ne plus ultra of Batman’s wonderful toys was the Batmobile in its many incarnations.

We’ve got no context for this one, save for noting that’s it drawn on the back of another Mini Cooper—what is with you guys and dirty car art, anyway?–and that its from the great state of Texas, which isn’t known for doing anything halfway. We can also surmise from the numbers in the art itself that this was drawn to celebrate something called Pet Fest, which took place back in 2006 apparently.

From there, the only guidance we have is to sit back, enjoy all the ridiculously cute little animals—check out the face on that turtle, seriously—and contemplate one of the great philosophical questions: Who did in fact let the dogs out.

Albert Einstein is probably the biggest figure in 20th century science, and with very good reason. Despite the fact that none of us really know what it means, we’ve all got his most famous equation committed to memory, and can even break down the various elements into their meaning.

If we’re honest, he’s mostly famous for his iconic mad scientist hair and his quirky sense of humor—and more darkly well known for his role in inventing the atomic bomb and thus ending the Second World War. In all his complexity, here he is, portrayed in detail on the back of yet another Mini.

Christmas may be the most wonderful time of the year, but it’s also hugely stressful, with a lot of work going into getting ready for the holidays, the pressure to be happy steadily mounting, and the annoying presence of the people we love. So it’s kind of nice when you do see something like this that captures the really good stuff about the holiday season—Santa, the spirit of giving; the ever-festive bells and holly; and a little reminder that Peace on Earth is a goal toward which we should all be working, every day. Someone cared enough to put a little joy into your life, so embrace that even if the holidays are getting you down.

It’s another Mini Cooper. Of course it is, who else but a Mini owner would do something like this?

That out of the way, neither the art nor the sentiment is bad per se. The flowers and the basic message recall the idealistic days of the 1960s, even if the now-yuppified Cooper does not. And the use of human hands to spell out the letters may not be original , but it’s touching and charming and a few other words we could throw at it. All in all this is another little positive burst from a dirty car artist, and we have to say that we approve.

The Great Wave Off Kanagawa – a famous artwork that’s been perfectly replicated on the back of a Toyota Prius. Love it!

Happy 70th, Bob! Whomever you are. This one is so simple, it’s beautiful.

If you can’t name them, you don’t know culture! Just kidding, we don’t know these people either. But the artwork is fantastic!

Just a mother and her child, and a big window full of dusty grime.

Ape. Together. Strong! Neat little Planet of the Apes artwork for ya.

Moe, Larry and Curly…the legends! The Three Stooges are all-time classics, and we love this car window artwork of them.

Bob Ross, you beautiful son of a gun! Thanks for all the painting memories.

America, the beautiful. Land of the Free, home of the Brave, and the native soil of some of the biggest public art ever created. Mount Rushmore is a masterpiece carved in granite in the Black Hills, and it looms large both over the landscape and within the public consciousness of the American people. So when you see something like this, all you can do is appreciate its majesty and the legacy of our nations Founding Fathers. Try to ignore the fact that we stole the sacred hills of Native American people, that’ll just bring you down when you should be feeling good.

Since the death of Robin Williams—rest in peace, good sir, and thanks for the laughs—Bill Murray has emerged as our senior comedian, social commentator, and subversive philosopher-in-residence. And it’s a damn good thing, too, because during a long commute or faced with a dirty car you may need a reminder of this fundamental truth. You’re awesome, and don’t you ever forget it. Would one of the Ghostbusters lie to you? Of course not, don’t be silly. Just keep on being awesome, no matter the condition or cleanliness of your back windshield. Just ignore that in the name of awesome.

Take a look, even as presented here. Note how the curves of the man’s pitchfork are mirrored by the curves of the window above the house is front porch, and echoed faintly the face shapes of the two people. The stern, honestly looks on their faces, the lines of his suit versus the curves and arcs of her dress. You had no idea that a dirty car painting could capture so much art, did you?

Jurassic Park—just saying the name of the movie is enough to get the theme song going in your head, isn’t it? That iconic score perfectly captures the wonder of it all—seeing actual dinosaurs in real life. It’s easy to parody the scene in the movie in which the outside characters are confronted by real life dinos for the first time, but if you let yourself get carried away with them—and admit it, 12 year old you did—it’s a magical moment.

Christopher Walken is a man of many talents: a gift actor, and incredible dancer, a music lover, and quite probably possessed of one of the most memorable faces in Hollywood. He may also be the second or third creepiest person in the entertainment industry—we’ll let him fight it out with Willem Defoe and John Malkovich for the top slot there.

And his name lends itself to wonderful puns, like this one. No sir, you will not be Walken. You’ll be a-drivin’, in grand style in your filthy Volvo wagon just the way God intended. Now if only you could find a little more cowbell . . .

We’re beginning to doubt the sanity and stability of the owners of Mini Coopers, at least those who feel the need to create dirty car art on their admittedly canvas-like back windshield. This is a great case in point. We’re sure this is a reference to something, but we can’t think of what. The cityscape in the background is pretty indistinct—Chicago, maybe—and the couple is pretty bland and nondescript—until you look into his eyes. His weirdly misshapen, uneven, mutated eyes. Is this . . . is this some sort of science fiction piece? Is he an alien? What’s going on?

Seriously, we’re going to be a lot more cautious around people who drive Minis.

Whether you’ve ever been to Italy, or even care about art, you know the Sistine Chapel and the epic story of Michelangelo laying on is back on top of scaffolding for years to depict the many biblical imagines that fill that storied space. “The Creation of Man” is one of the more awe-inspiring pieces of it, with the Lord reaching out his hand to touch fingertips with Adam, breathing life into the very first human. Regardless of your faith, it’s an amazing piece of art and really puts humanity’s role in creation into context.

So, what better dirty-car addition to this famous moment than the ever-cheerful Pillsbury Dough Boy? Tee-hee!

This one isn’t art so much as it is beautifully blunt and direct social commentary. Here we see an artistic expression of how many marriages and relationships feel if they go on long enough: one party nagging the other over one of their many failings, shortcomings, or failures—in this case the inability to keep the car clean. The expressions on their faces make it: his embattled and world-weary, resigned to this life for lack of any other; hers focused, angry, almost joyful in finding another excuse to go after him. Regardless of gender or sexuality, we’ve all either been or will become one of these two—maybe both.

We wonder why so many marriages end in divorce, but the answer was here all long on the back of a dirty car.

Until you do—seriously, get on that—we’re left with a bunch of questions: Who is Biff? Why does his name appear like fireworks—is he really that worth of celebration? Why does he look like a glasses-wearing rat-monster? Is Biff a Nosferatu-style vampire, albeit one with a charming gap in his front teeth? Who felt the need to create this, and then sign their name to it?

So many questions, and all we can do is wonder.

This may be our favorite piece of purely original dirty car art, largely due to the fact that it tells a whole story in one relatively quick and easy image. Someone with luxuriously wavy hair is driving. Someone else, younger and probably female, is in the back seat, desperately pounding on the rear window (yes, that’s a Hitchcock reference; get on our level) in a bid to get your attention.

What’s going on? Is this a kidnapping in progress? A mentally ill person being transported by a loving family member? Just a disgruntled teenager? We may never know, but it’s an image that will stick with us long after we’re done with this article.