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Zurich’s FIFA Museum is set to unveil a unique perspective on the world’s most popular sport: football through the lens of design. The upcoming exhibition, titled “Designing the Beautiful Game,” is a collaborative effort with London’s Design Museum and will open its doors on October 13, 2023.

Originally premiering at the Design Museum in London, this exhibition was the first of its kind to delve deep into the design elements of football. It captivated audiences with its immersive displays and compelling narratives. Now, in collaboration with the FIFA Museum, the exhibition has been tailored to fit the Zurich space, incorporating additional objects from the museum’s vast collection.

The exhibition is structured into three main sections: Performance, Identity, and Crowds. Each section offers a unique lens through which to view the sport.

In the Performance section, visitors can trace the evolution of football equipment, comparing the heavy leather balls from the inaugural FIFA World Cup in 1930 to the technologically advanced, microchipped balls used in Qatar 2022. Iconic items like Pelé’s boots and Lionel Messi’s shinpads highlight the game’s innovative advancements.

The Identity section celebrates the fans, the lifeblood of the sport. It delves into the traditions, passions, and global connections that have shaped football communities worldwide. Among the curated memorabilia is a poignant memorial banner created by Liverpool fan and Hillsborough Disaster survivor, Peter Carney.

The Crowds section offers an immersive stadium experience, taking visitors on a journey through the meticulously designed sights and sounds of iconic venues like Montevideo’s Centenario and Milan’s San Siro.

Marco Fazzone, FIFA Museum’s Managing Director, expressed his excitement about the collaboration: “This exhibition allows us to view football from a fresh perspective, highlighting design’s pivotal role in the sport’s evolution. Our partnership with the Design Museum has been a creatively enriching experience.”

Tim Marlow, Director of the Design Museum, echoed Fazzone’s sentiments, emphasizing football’s global appeal and the previously unexplored connection between the sport and design.

For those eager to experience this unique blend of football and design, admission to “Designing the Beautiful Game” is included with a regular museum ticket.


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