It’s possible that some of you may recall that last year noted painter of tinkering Christopher Walkens and improbable lunchboxes Brandon Bird revealed his plans to create a Jerry Orbach-themed art car. Those dreams are now a reality, as ORBACH1 is now complete.

The car is a 2008 Ford Crown Victoria, and ex-police cruiser, which is ideal for a car designed to honor the star of the long, long running police procedural Law & Order. Here’s the old workhorse before transformation:


... and after:


The kandy paint job (the color is “pagan gold”) was done at Diamond Coats in Santa Ana, and the airbrush art is by Oscar Mendoza.


Bird has been painting Orbach and Law & Order-related artwork for years, and explains it like this:

Jerry Orbach has long functioned as a source of personal and artistic inspiration. A muse, if you will.

Many years ago, I found myself in a rut—I was about to be unemployed, and the most exciting thing in my life were “Law & Order” marathons on TNT. But in Jerry Orbach’s character of Detective Lennie Briscoe, I found a spark. Here was a man made weary by the world, who nonetheless persevered. His acerbic wit and hangdog attitude couldn’t mask a natural warmth and kindness. I got off the couch, and put together an art show. I made a “Law & Order” coloring book, which was the first thing I ever did that became a viral hit, and that has snowballed into an entire career making ridiculous pop art. I owe a lot of good things in my life to Jerry Orbach.


I suspect that if Jerry Orbach were alive today to see the car, he’d probably treat it with the same sort of amused bafflement that he held for the coloring book. Amused bafflement is a pretty pleasant emotional cocktail, if you think about it.


Bird has yet to decide on what wheels the car needs, other than they need to be something other than stock. He asked the collective Jaloposphere for some advice, so if you have strong opinions about wheels for a Jerry Orbach-themed Crown Vic, now’s your chance to shine.


Sometimes it’s just nice to see a weird-ass dream realized. If you need any Orbach-themed stuff for your car, Brandon Bird has you covered, too.

Senior Editor, Jalopnik • Running: 1973 VW Beetle, 2006 Scion xB, 1990 Nissan Pao, 1991 Yugo GV Plus • Not-so-running: 1973 Reliant Scimitar, 1977 Dodge Tioga RV (also, buy my book!)

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