LIFE and Times: Floating Cars and Magic Plastics

The final Packard-centered collection discovered by PPG volunteer Richard Meyer shows one for the record books. Meyer provides what little context is available: “Included in these images is a demonstration that was performed to show the strength of a Mylar plastic sheeting material,” he says.

This delightfully bizarre selection of photographs was taken by LIFE photographer Andreas Feininger in late 1954. Feininger’s childhood and early adulthood were both spent in Europe, but his photographic career exploded upon his immigration to New York, where many of his most famous images were captured.

In addition to supporting several full-grown men—one of whom sits peacefully on a flying carpet—the Mylar sheet was able to lift and support a Packard Clipper Super. No cars or Mylar sheets were harmed during the performance.