Neuzz, the Mexican La Liga soccer artist
From London to Kabul, urban art celebrates the return of Spanish soccer with the 'United Streets of La Liga' campaign.
On a building in the San Miguel Chapultepec neighborhood in Mexico City, a mural depicting a Mexican coyote warrior kicking a ball greets Mexican soccer fans whose sporting passion has been curtailed by COVID-19 pandemic.
The author of the work, Neuzz, a well-known urban artist, has participated with 11 other international artists in the 'United Streets of La Liga' campaign, which celebrates the return of the beautiful game in Spain after 92 days without a match.
They have done so by commissioning the artists to create urban art murals inspired by a passion for soccer, and three Latin American cities have joined the project: Bogotá, São Paulo and, of course, Mexico City.
"The basis of the design was to generate a composition with a Mexican identity. Being an international project it was important to emphasize the place and nationality of the artist and his location in the international context. Hence the integration of the Coyote Warrior as a central element of the work," the Mixtec-Zapotec artist told EFE.
Behind Neuzz's alias is illustrator and painter Miguel Mejia, whose work has been published internationally and who belongs to a new generation of street artists working to bring the vast culture of Mexico, a country of muralists, to the walls.
Specifically, Neuzz is inspired by pre-Columbian graphics and Mexican folklore with references to José Guadalupe Posada's skull prints, mixing it with pop culture and retro aesthetics.
"I started using the concept of the mask first because of its aesthetics, which I have always found shocking and even scary. In the case of the masks made in Mexico in particular, they serve as an instrument of interaction and spiritual communication between man-animal and the forces of nature, and also with the magical and spiritual world. When a character appears with a mask in my drawings or illustrations, it means it is a ghost spirit," said Neuzz, one of whose works is in Miami's Wynwood Art District.
Apart from the Aztec city, you can find murals celebrating the return of LaLiga made by urban artists in cities such as Kabul (Afghanistan), Dar Es Salaam (Tanzania), Hong Kong (Hong Kong), Lagos (Nigeria), Bali (Indonesia), Copenhagen (Denmark), Ho Chi Minh City (Vietnam), Paris (France) and London (UK).
Commenting on the initiative, La Liga's marketing director, Oscar Mayo, said: "After 92 days without official matches we are delighted that soccer is back. The restart of La Liga means a lot to all soccer fans and we wanted to celebrate this with our 'United Streets of La Liga' campaign. From Lagos to London to Bali to Mexico City, our artists have brought the excitement of LaLiga's return to life for fans and, along with other fans around the world, we look forward to enjoying our soccer again."