Mark Wallinger, the 2007 winner of the Turner Prize, has created a new work called One World, which uses a football as its canvas. The piece was inspired by the famous Christmas truce of 1914, when soldiers from both sides in the First World War emerged from the trenches and met in No Man’s Land to exchange gifts and play football.
Mark has transformed the football into a globe of the world using images from Nasa, taking his inspiration from the celebrated “Earthrise” image taken during the Apollo 8 lunar orbit on 24 December 1968. It’s an image of enduring beauty, depicting a peaceful planet floating in the vastness of space.
The work was co-commissioned by Liverpool Biennial and 14-18 NOW, the UK’s arts programme for the First World War centenary. A limited-edition run of One World footballs is being released to community football teams and extraordinary individuals across the country, along with the simple request to each person to upload their own #OneWorld video in response to Mark’s call for action.
Speaking about the project, Mark said, “It is 100 years since the Armistice was agreed in 1918, and 50 years since the Earthrise photograph was taken on Christmas Eve 1968. One World is my contribution to the legacy of those precious moments – spreading a message of peace for the world. Time to stop fighting and start playing. Playing the beautiful game.”