Giant pitch portrait of Premiership Rugby stars unveiled at Twickenham to mark long-awaited restart of the season

The pitch at Twickenham Stadium has been transformed into a stunning portrait featuring three of Premiership Rugby’s star players today.

The giant rugby art, the largest outdoor painting ever created in the UK, was unveiled to celebrate the restart of Gallagher Premiership Rugby on Friday 14th August when Harlequins take on Sale Sharks at 7:45pm, just 200 metres away.

The artwork features Harlequins player, Joe Marler; Saracens’ Maro Itoje, as well as Sale Sharks’ Rugby World Cup winner Faf de Klerk
It took team of eight artists more than 24 hours to complete the pitch portrait and more than 100 hours of planning before any paint touched the grass. A bespoke computer program was written to generate the precise measurements that were needed to create the artwork to the exact scale of the stadium.

The image, which occupies most of the 7,000 square metre pitch, was created using a grid comprised of 13,420 elements. Each painted line in the portrait is just 6 inches wide.  Nearly 1280 litres of biodegradable pitch marker paint were used for the elaborate creation.

Giant pitch portrait of Premiership Rugby stars unveiled at Twickenham to mark long-awaited restart of the season. from Taylor Herring on Vimeo.

An estimated 150,000 passengers will enjoy the spectacle from the sky this week on flights in and out of London’s Heathrow airport.

British artist John Lundberg, who oversaw the portrait said; “I refer to what I make as conceptual art. When you view the art work up close you can’t really tell what it is but then when you see it from a vantage point it comes together and creates a complete image.

“It’s an incredible honour to create this piece to celebrate the return of rugby. It’s been such a tough time for sport and many industries, and it’s nice to be a part of bringing this sport back to the people who love it”. 

The first game of the restarted Gallagher Premiership Rugby 2019-20 season, between Harlequins and Sale Sharks is live on BT Sport at 7.45pm on Friday 14th August


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LIST | Players who should feature for England in 2021

Eddie Jones has some fantastic young players gunning for a place in his England squad.

Ben Curry, Sale Sharks

Twin brother of Tom, he was called up to the senior England squad by Eddie Jones for their 2017 summer tour of Argentina, but did not make an appearance on the tour. The former England U20 captain never lets Sale down and certainly wouldn’t let his country down if given the call.

Ollie Thorley, Gloucester

He made his debut for the Cherry & Whites in 2013 as a 17-year-old, partnering World Cup winner Mike Tindall in the centre of an LV= Cup match, and has since gone on to prove himself as one of the brightest talents at Kingsholm. A World Rugby U20 Championship winner in 2016, Thorley has pace, power and an eye for the try line.

Gabriel Ibitoye, Harlequins

He was called into the senior England training squad during the 2019 Six Nations and he was one of four nominees for player of the tournament at the Under-20 World Championship. The powerful, quick wing is stocky with a low centre of gravity, a devastating turn of pace and electric feet. This is also looking like it could be his breakthrough campaign for him at Harlequins.

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