Mixed media | Round ball, flat art

Titled “Army Football,” the mixed-media work in pen and black ink, graphite and watercolor by James Boswell is one of 41 World War II–era drawings, watercolors and linocuts the British Museum holds in its Boswell collection.

British Museum database shows football in mix of media

London | Perusing institutional archives for football-related arcana has been made considerably easier in the Internet age. A recent example is the quiet launch to the Web of a portion of 50,000 drawings and a far greater number of prints—so-called flat art—within the British Museum collection (James Fenton, “Rembrandt Reaches the Web,” Guardian, Nov 10).

A simple keyword search on “football” yields 34 results. Tantalizingly, much of the material that has thus far been cataloged remains unavailable—a poster, “Kuwait FC,” depicting a football and “an imprisoned hand”; a papercut (papel picado) banner by Maurilio Rojas, an elaborate Day of the Dead Festival creation from Mexico that incorporates a skeleton goalkeeper; “Madadeni Mental Hospital Which Has Many People,” a 1969 montage by John Muafangejo of the South African government hospital that includes patients playing football and planting a tree; and other drawings and satirical sketches.


A slideshow of football images from the British Museum Digital Collection Database: “ ‘Flat Art’ | Football Images from the British Museum.”

But the rewards make a virtual visit worthwhile, as demonstrated in our slideshow.

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