The Story


The summer of 1998 marked the beginning of a unique cultural undertaking: The creation of the first "Victory work", a work of art created by artist David Pflugi to commemorate of the FIFA football world cup in France of that year and hand-signed by all players of both teams in the final. Since then, he has completed further works for each world cup, continuing to the present day. All of these works have been signed by all players of the respective world cup finalist teams.

This on-going project constitutes a spectacular achievement, not just in the field of art, but also in the field of football history – never before had all the finalists in a world cup lent their signatures to one object, let alone a work of art.

This achievement becomes all the more impressive if one takes into consideration the considerable difficulties that had to be overcome each time in order to bring all of the works to their intended conclusion.

The story of the Victory Works must be viewed as not just an endeavour of culture, but also one of philanthrophy: The works are destined to be auctioned eventually, with a considerable part of the proceeds going to charitable causes.

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2018: The Key to Success

2014: The Seeds of Victory

David Pflugi's fifth work in honour of a FIFA Football World Cup is the first one to be created entirely on location in the host country. It was signed by the players of the German and Argentinian national football teams at Rio's São Januário stadium on July 12th 2014.

The sculpture, measuring 8m in length and 3 m in height, takes on different forms when viewed from different perspectives, showing amongst others a small child, a football and Rio's famous Christ the Redeemer statue.

The creation of the work began on October 1st 2013 and took place in the regions of Esplanada, Salvador and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
German signatures
Manuel Neuer, Kevin Grosskreutz, Matthias Ginter, Benedikt Hoewedes, Mats Hummels, Sami Khedira, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Mesut Oezil, Andre Schuerrle, Lukas Podolski, Miroslav Klose, Ron-Robert Zieler, Thomas Mueller, Julian Draxler, Erik Durm, Philipp Lahm, Per Mertesacker, Toni Kroos, Mario Goetze, Jerome Boateng, Shkodran Mustafi, Roman Weidenfeller, Christoph Kramer

Coach: Joachim Loew
Argentinian signatures
Sergio Romero, Ezequiel Garay, Hugo Campagnaro, Pablo Zabaleta, Fernando Gago, Lucas Biglia, Angel Di Maria, Enzo Perez, Gonzalo Higuain, Lionel Messi, Maxi Rodriguez, Augusto Fernandez, Javier Mascherano, Martin DeMichelis, Marcos Rojo, Federico Fernandez, Rodrigo Palacio, Ricardo Alvarez, Sergio Aguero, Mariano Andujar, Ezequiel Lavezzi, Jose Maria Basanta

Coach: Alejandro Sabella

2010: Reaching for the Stars

"Reaching for the stars", the 2010 Victory Work. A hollowed-out sphere, this object permits the viewer not only to look into its core, but to physically enter it. Its images mainly concern the history and future of South Africa: Nelson Mandela's hand, the fingers of which extend into further hands, reaches through the bars of a prison cell, a flower buds from the townships and children, playing football on a sheet of glass, celebrate a goal. Two massive players in gold and silver are covered with photographic scenes from the world cup, which become recognisable when viewed from a short distance.

Width: 2.50 m / Height: 2.50 m / Depth: 2.50 m
Spanish signatures
Iker Casillas, Pepe Reina, Victor Valdes, Raul Albiol, Gerard Pique, Carlos Marchena, Sergio Ramos, Alvaro Arbeloa, Andres Iniesta, Xavi, Cesc Fabregas, Xabi Alonso, Sergio Busquets, Javier Martinez, David Silva, Fernando Torres, Juan Manuel Mata, Pedro, Fernando Llorente, Jesus Navas

Coach: Vicente Del Bosque
Dutch signatures
Maarten Stekelenburg, Michel Vorm, Sander Boschker, Gregory van der Wiel, John Heitinga, Joris Mathijsen, Giovanni van Bronckhorst, Khalid Boulahrouz, André Ooijer, Edson Braafheid, Mark van Bommel, Nigel de Jong, Wesley Sneijder, Demy de Zeeuw, Stijn Schaars, Ibrahim Afellay, Rafael van der Vaart, Dirk Kuyt, Robin van Persie, Arjen Robben, Eljero Elia, Ryan Babel, Klaas Jan Huntelaar

Coach: Bert van Marwijk
Assistant coach: Phillip Cocu
Assistant coach: Dick Voorn

2006: The Road to Berlin

The third Victory work was "The Road to Berlin", created by David Pflugi for the 2006 world cup. Again, several motifs are hidden within one object, becoming visible only when viewed from different sides. A football player just about to score the winning goal can be seen from the left, while from the right, an abstract character is depicted. When viewed from the front, the object shows symbolic depictions of a gold, silver and bronze player, all marching on a colourful Road towards Berlin.

The football being kicked by the player in the image on the left side of the work is intended to be used as the projection surface for a film whenever the work is on display. The creation of the object took nine months.

Width: 2.00 m / Height: 2.50 m / Depth: 0.40 m
Italian signatures
Gianluigi Buffon (GK), Cristian Zaccardo, Fabio Grosso, Daniele De Rossi, Fabio Cannavaro (captain), Andrea Barzagli, Alessandro Del Piero, Gennaro Gattuso, Luca Toni, Francesco Totti, Alberto Gilardino, Angelo Peruzzi (GK), Alessandro Nesta, Marco Amelia (GK), Vincenzo Iaquinta, Mauro Camoranesi, Simone Barone, Filippo Inzaghi, Gianluca Zambrotta, Simone Perrotta, Andrea Pirlo, Massimo Oddo, Marco Materazzi

Coach: Marcello Lippi
French signatures
Mickaël Landreau (GK), Jean-Alain Boumsong, Éric Abidal, Patrick Vieira, William Gallas, Claude Makelele, Florent Malouda, Vikash Dhorasoo, Sidney Govou, Zinédine Zidane (captain), Sylvain Wiltord, Thierry Henry, Mikaël Silvestre, Louis Saha, Lilian Thuram, Fabien Barthez (GK), Gaël Givet, Alou Diarra, Willy Sagnol, David Trezeguet, Pascal Chimbonda, Franck Ribéry, Grégory Coupet (GK)

Coach: Raymond Domenech

2002: The Magic of Football

"The Magic of Football", created for the world cup of 2002. Through anamorphic illusions painted on its relief, the object shows different or changing images when viewed from different sides. The creation of this highly complex work was originally scheduled to take three months, but ultimately required about twenty months of non-stop work.

FIFA president Joseph Blatter's face is visible in the image's center when the work is viewed from a distance of more than 25m. The signatures of the German and Brazilian teams can be seen in the lower half of the object.

Width: 2.40 m / Height: 2.40 m
Brazilian signatures
Marcos (GK), Cafu (Captain), Lúcio, Roque Júnior, Edmílson, Roberto Carlos, Ricardinho, Gilberto Silva, Ronaldo, Rivaldo, Ronaldinho, Dida (GK), Belletti, Ânderson Polga, Kléberson, Júnior, Denílson, Vampeta, Juninho, Edílson, Luizão, Rogério Ceni (GK), Kaká

Coach: Luiz Felipe Scolari
German signatures
Oliver Kahn (GK) (Captain), Thomas Linke, Marko Rehmer, Frank Baumann, Carsten Ramelow, Christian Ziege, Oliver Neuville, Dietmar Hamann, Carsten Jancker, Lars Ricken, Miroslav Klose, Jens Lehmann (GK), Michael Ballack, Gerald Asamoah, Sebastian Kehl, Jens Jeremies, Marco Bode, Jörg Böhme, Bernd Schneider, Oliver Bierhoff, Christoph Metzelder, Torsten Frings, Hans-Jörg Butt (GK)

Coach: Rudi Völler
Assistant coach: Michael Skibbe
Goalkeeper coach: Sepp Maier

1998: Le rêve du football

"Le rêve du football" shows the long and stony road the players must overcome in order to qualify for the world cup in France. Football players in gold, silver and bronze symbolise their victories along the way and their hopes for the final. The golden player is just about to score the winning goal, and a dreamlike rendition of the Arc de Triomphe hovers in a semi-transparent bubble above them, along with the world cup trophy. The face of Michel Platini, head of the organisational committee of the 1998 world cup, can be seen on the horizon.

Width: 1.86 m / Height: 1.35 m
French signatures
Bernard Lama (GK), Vincent Candela, Bixente Lizarazu, Patrick Vieira, Laurent Blanc, Youri Djorkaeff, Didier Deschamps (captain), Marcel Desailly, Stéphane Guivarc'h, Zinédine Zidane, Robert Pires, Thierry Henry, Bernard Diomède, Alain Boghossian, Lilian Thuram, Fabien Barthez (GK), Emmanuel Petit, Frank Lebœuf, Christian Karembeu, David Trezeguet, Christophe Dugarry, Lionel Charbonnier (GK)

Coach: Aimé Jacquet
Assistant coach: Roger Lemerre
Brazilian signatures
Taffarel (GK), Cafu, Aldair, Júnior Baiano, César Sampaio, Roberto Carlos, Giovanni, Dunga (captain), Ronaldo, Rivaldo, Emerson, Carlos Germano, Zé Carlos, Gonçalves, André Cruz, Zé Roberto, Doriva, Leonardo, Denílson, Bebeto, Edmundo, Dida (GK)

Coach: Mário Zagallo
Assistant coach: Zico

The Artist

David Pflugi
„There is no such thing as a flat surface.“

On first impression, this may seem like an odd and perhaps even somewhat provocative statement. Upon further consideration, however, it turns out to be nothing but a plain truth – for once it is sufficiently magnified, everything which we perceive as a flat surface reveals itself to be a relief, a landscape with peaks and troughs.

A flat surface is a mirage, an illusion – and the perfect example of how the world around us is often very different than we imagine.

The man behind this statement is the artist David Pflugi, born 1969 in Switzerland.

While visiting a quarry in his youth, he started seeing shapes and sculptures within the stone fragments there. His resulting fascination with stone as a medium was immediate. Wishing to breathe life into the stones, he learned the stone sculptor's trade. It was this professional training which laid the groundwork for his remarkable spatial imagination. Alongside this, David Pflugi nurtured an enthusiasm for painting. The coming together of these usually separate arts was later to form the foundation of his creative oeuvre.

Through the union of sculpture and painting, David Pflugi creates three-dimensional objects, which he then adorns with two-dimensional images. Each of these, however, can only be discovered when the work is seen from a specific perspective. Depending on one's angle of view, entirely new images and scenes result, and in the spaces between those, forms and figures – a wild dance of untamed colour.
In addition to sculpting and painting, Pflugi also integrates people and new media into his art. This is apparent in his performances, amongst other examples.

„David Pflugi does not demand contemplation, not observation, but movement. He does not offer mysterious unambiguousness, but sensibility for the layers of reality.“ - Prof. Dr. Manfred Faßler, of the Johann Wolfgang Goethe university in Frankfurt am Main, Germany.

By way of his creative endeavours, David Pflugi wants to both move people and get people moving. By changing their own position, the observers can discover new perspectives. What is asked of them in return is an almost child-like sense of curiosity, and openness towards the unexpected. This trust is then rewarded with the expanding of their horizons, an almost infinite abundance of perspectives.

This process usually takes place subconsciously. Pflugi's works reach out to those who are open to them – like an inviting hand, manifesting itself from within the object, beckoning the observer to pass through the gates of curiosity and embark on a journey of discovery.

Although David Pflugi's art seeks to trigger changes in position, he and his art do not assume any specific position, since an infinite number of truths exists for any given subject.

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Postal address: David Pflugi
Wahlenstrasse 81
CH-4242 Laufen

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