Friday, February 20, 2015

World Cup '74 Portrait #256 (Agustin Balbuena: Argentina)

graphite & putty eraser, with watercolour pencil/30x21cm

Number 256, & the last of the portraits in the World Cup ’74 drawing project, which has taken just 3 weeks shy of a year to complete, the final randomly-chosen subject, the last one out of the hat, being another of the great majority of those represented to be unheard of/unremembered from my football novice’s experience of the televised coverage of the tournament.

For the record, a little light research has unearthed the facts that Agustin Balbuena, who was represented in the FKS ‘Wonderful World of Soccer Stars World Cup 1974 sticker album (which of course provides the original source object/image from which the drawing is processed), was selected as a member of the official Argentina squad for the tournament & went to play in four matches for his country over its course, the opening 2 – 3 defeat to Poland, as a 52nd-minute substitute in the victory over Haiti that secured qualification for the Second Phase & then in the first two matches there, the defeats to Holland &, confirming the Argentinians’ elimination, Brazil.

It’s a curious & interesting coincidence that the last subject in the Project should be a representative of Argentina, when that very country would be hosting the following football World Cup, in 1978, one in which I took a great deal more informed interest & that I remember in much more vivid detail, the players, matches, incidents, etc, & on the subject of which I happen to have acquired & possess a pair of sticker albums, published by FKS & Panini again. Surely not another Project beckoning…? Perhaps - but perhaps not straight away…

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