cult kits 1982 world cup prints article header


Every World Cup has had its own offering of commercial’s, advertising hoardings and merchandise. But there is one World Cup, that for us at least, stands head and shoulders above the World Cup’s both before and after. And that is the prints of the 1982 World Cup.

A set of ten prints, each commissioned to different artists from around the world, to showcase the diversity of cultures set to be on display at the 1982 Copa Del Mundo. But here’s the twist in the tale, they were scandalously, (to our knowledge at least) never used.

Why? Well, the story goes they were simply not accepted by the event organisers and ended up being buried in a warehouse somewhere in Spain until their discovery. Like a sort of, low budget Indiana Jones, piece to the puzzle for the wider tale, … sort of film.

But until now, little has been written about the artists who created these masterpieces, never to be seen by the general public of 1982. Each artists piece, carefully selected to produce one standalone piece, for each city/region of Spain. Showcasing their unique style to create a visual representation of the place carefully selected for each of them.

Anyway, as we're stocking eight of the finest from the series of ten, let us tell you a little bit about each of the artists behind the works. Because let's face it, these World Cup prints are not your average offerings for tournament promotion.  



Artist: Joan Miro

 cult kits espana 1982 world cup prints joan miro


Spanish painter and sculptor born in Barcelona in 1893, He asserted himself through different mediums such as painting, collage, lithography, etching and ceramics. Miró discovered cubism and fauvism in Paris from 1920, where he met Pablo Picasso, André Masson both Dadaïst members, before he became a member of surrealism movement.


cult kits espana 1982 world cup prints joan miro


He completed one of his most famous works “Constellations" in 1940/41 whilst at the Palma de Mallorca where he stayed until 1956. When the commissioners for this poster needed a lead, Joan Miro was their standout choice.


cult kits 1982 espana world cup prints joan miro


Buy the España print here.



Artist: Antonio Saura


cult kits espana 1982 copa del mundo antonio-saura

Antonio Saura Atarés was a Spanish artist and writer, one of the major post-war painters to emerge in Spain in the fifties.

cult kits espana 1982 prints antonio-saura painting


He began painting and writing in 1947 in Madrid while suffering from tuberculosis, having already been confined to his bed for five years. Dreamlike and surreal characters along with imaginary landscapes. Who knows if Saura was even given a brief for this one, or whether he simply let his own dreams takeover when it came to creating this masterpiece.


cult kits espana 1982 prints antonio saura sevilla


Buy the Sevilla print here.



Illustrator: Roland Topor


cult kits 82 espana world cup prints Roland Topor


A French illustrator, cartoonist, comics artist, painter, novelist, playwright, film and TV writer, filmmaker and actor. The night before he died of a cerebral hemorrhage, it is reported that he couldn't sleep, and instead spent the night visiting Parisian cafes, enjoying Cuban cigars, and drinking Bordeaux wine. What a guy!


cult kits 1982 espana world cup print Roland Topor


Roland Topor may be best known for his graphic works with their surrealist humour. His artworks have appeared in books, newspapers, posters, and film animations. Málaga was his brief – and oh boy did he create a great in his offering.


cult kits 1982 espana world cup prints Roland Topor Malaga print


Buy the Málaga print here.



Artist: Jean-Michel Folon


cult kits 1982 world cup prints Jean-Michel Folon


A Belgian artist, illustrator, painter, and sculptor, who had his work exhibited all over the world. From New York, Tokyo and Milan. Over the years Folon concentrated on different techniques, including watercolour, etching, silkscreen, illustrations, mosaics, and stained glass, which showed the diversity of his art. 


cult kits 1982 world cup prints Jean-Michel Folon


His artistic value was recognised by several exhibitions organised in the most famous galleries and museums in the world, but his inclusion in this print series was arguably his greatest accomplishment in our opinion. But then we’re biased obviously.

cult kits 1982 world cup print collection zaragoza


Buy the Zaragoza print here.



Artist: Jiri Kolář


cult kits 1982 1982 world cup prints Jiri Kolář


Kolar started his early life as a cabinet maker (which cost him a finger). He later changed trades several times, working as a construction worker, security guard, and bartender, among other jobs. But by 1943 he'd really found his feet as a writer.


cult kits 1982 1982 world cup prints Jiri Kolář


It wasn't until the 1960s that Kolář started to combine painting and poetry, eventually switching entirely to visual art. His collages were intended to influence the viewer's outlook on life; the destruction and fragmentation of the world... Cheery don't you think? Lucky for us, Jiri put his rather gloomy opinion of the world to one side for his offering of works.


cult kits 1982 world cup prints Jiri Kolář


Buy the Elche print here.



Artist: Antoni Tapies


cult kits 1982 world cup prints Antoni Tapies


His exploration of Surrealist imagery early in his career served as the foundation for an ongoing investigation into the nature of physical objects and their materiality.

cult kits 1982 world cup prints Antoni Tapies

Quite how this resulted in him becoming the choice for Barcelona's piece we'll never know. But rest assured, we love his offering. It has a somewhat Japanese psychopathic qulaity to it, and we can appreciate that.


cult kits 1982 world cup collection barcelona print


Buy the Barcelona print here.



Artist: Pierre Alenchinsky


cult kits 1982 world cup prints Pierre Alenchinsky


A Belgian artist who studied illustration techniques, printing and photography. He was also a lover of Chinese and Japanese calligraphy. In the early 1950s he was the Paris correspondent for the Japanese journal Bokubi (the Beauty of Ink).


cult kits 1982 world cup prints Pierre Alenchinsky


Anyway, his international career continued throughout the seventies and by 1983 he became Professor of painting at the École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts, Paris. We like to think it was here that someone had the bright idea to get Pierre involved, resulting in the masterpiece you now see today, which is his offering for Alicante.


cult kits 1982 world cup prints Pierre Alenchinsky


Buy the Alicante print here.




Artist: Valerio Adami


cult kits 1982 world cup prints Valerio Adami


An Italian painter. Educated at the Accademia di Brera in Milan, he has since worked in both London and Paris.

cult kits 1982 world cup prints Valerio Adami

His art is influenced by Pop Art. In his early career, Adami's works were expressionistic, but by the time of his second exhibition in 1964 at Kassel, he had developed a style of painting reminiscent of French cloisonnism, featuring regions of flat colour bordered by black lines. In 2010, the Boca Raton Museum of Art devoted a special exhibit to Adami's paintings and drawings.


cult kits 1982 world cup prints Valerio Adami


Buy the Valencia print here.


So, there you have it – the artists behind the works of possibly World Football's greatest ever lost art. You can grab your piece of history here.

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