Designing the new Studebaker

New exhibit a project by the League of Retired Automotive Designers
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On Nov. 11, the Studebaker National Museum opens a new exhibit entitled Designing the New Studebaker: A Project by the League of Retired Automotive Designers.The League is a group of automotive design veterans from Ford, General Motors, Chrysler, AMC, Studebaker and Packard who are devoting their experience and talent to design a 21st century Studebaker.

More than 20 works will be shown in the exhibit. The opening reception for this exhibit will be held on Nov. 11 from 5:30-9 p.m.

Designers featured in this exhibit include:

Charles M. Jordan, an accomplished designer for General Motors, Jordan tenure also included overseeing GM’s luxury brands including Oldsmobile, Buick and Cadillac, before being named Vice President of GM design in 1986. Jordan’s body of design work at GM includes the 1955 Cameo show truck, 1956 Buick Centurion Concept, and the XP-700 “Phantom” Corvette, and the Opel Manta Coupe. Jordan also has contributions to the Buick Reatta, Camaros, Firebirds, Aurora, the Ultralite, and the Sting Ray III.

Donald Wood. As chief designer for General Motors, Wood spent 38 years with this company. His most famous contributions are the 1968 Chevrolet Corvette, 1987 Chevy & GMC full-size Pickup, Suburban, Blazer and Yukon.

Joan Klatil Creamer.After attending Cleveland Institute of Art, Joan Klatil Creamer became General Motors first female exterior designer. After leaving the auto industry, Creamer designed for General Electric before branching out and starting her own business of product design. Creamer’s impressive designs have varied from making crystal for Lenox to photo frames for Things Remembered.

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Joseph A. Papai. A native of South Bend, Indiana, Papai received his Bachelors and Masters Degrees from the University of Notre Dame. Having experience in various industrial design positions, Papai has worked for Wheel House Products, Ford Motor Company, Coachmen Industries, American Motors, and Chrysler & Daimler Chrysler. Papai taught design as a professor at both the College for Creative Studies in Detroit as well as the Cleveland Institute of Art upon his retirement.

John Houlihan. A University of Notre Dame graduate, Houlihan has a wide variety of experience as well. Houlihan has worked for companies including General Motors, Smith Corona Marchant, General Electric, Milton Bradley, Timex, and Bulltoro Watch LLC.

Steven D. Pasteiner. Pasteiner was the Assistant Chief Designer for the Buick and Chevy 1 studio from the years 1966-1989. His portfolio includes the Buick Blackhawk, the Buick XP2000, the 1983 Commemorative Edition Corvettes, the ’79 Buick Riviera, and the Buick Grand National. Pasteiner also established Advanced Automobile Technologies in 1989.

Virgil M. Exner, Jr. Exner is also a University of Notre Dame alumnus and a retired United States Air Force Officer. His vast professional resume includes stints at Studebaker-Packard and the Ford Motor Company. Exner made large contributions to the designs of the Studebaker Lark, Volvo P-1800 S, Fiat 2300 S, Fiat 1500 S, Karmann Ghia 1500, Ford Maverick, Pinto, Thunderbirds, Fiesta, and the Crown Victoria. In addition to contributing a design for the exhibit, Mr. Exner is also serving as the guest curator.

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This exhibit is open from Nov. 11, 2010-June 20, 2010.

The Studebaker National Museum is located at 201 S. Chapin St. in downtown South Bend. It is open Monday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m., and Sunday noon-5 p.m. Admission is $8 for adults, $6.50 for seniors over 60, and $5 for youth ages 6-18. For more information, call the museum at 574-235-9714 or toll free at 1-888-391-5600 or visit its website at

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