Moscow, July 6: It can't get larger than this. The chief of an advertising agency in Russia, the country which is playing hosts to the 21st edition of the football world cup, used the opportunity to decorate Moscow ahead of the quadrennial tournament to commission a massive 12-story mural of his own wife, Reuters reported.
The huge portrait shows Daria, wife of Novatek Art director Ivan Panteleev in gym clothing, holding a football and standing in the open. Three cartoon birds were also seen admiring her in the portrait.
"This is the mural with which we are welcoming all foreigners to Russia and inviting them to the football games!" Novatek Art said in a description of the image on social media.
🇷🇺 O chefe de uma agência de publicidade russa foi encarregado de decorar as fachadas de Moscou antes da Copa do Mundo. Ele aproveitou a oportunidade para pedir mural da esposa, num prédio de 12 andares. A Rússia não é pra principiantes... pic.twitter.com/xPXe14coAn— Sandro Fernandes (@cafecomkremlin) July 4, 2018
Panteleev told Rueters that the money for the façade in Zhulebino district came from Moscow's city budget and one of the four world cup murals co-sponsored by its public relations committee.
He acknowledged that his wife chipped in as the model for that particular giant painting, Reuters said. Panteleev also said that one of the two painters who made the mural is Mue Bon, a graffiti artist from Thailand, who was in Russia for another government-funded Novatek Art project related to the mega event.
But not all eyes are admiring
The portrait of Panteleev's wife, which was unveiled before the World Cup began last month, also left many people upset, especially those from the street art community, said the Reuters report. There was criticism over the art director painting his own wife's mural but the former retorted, saying it was irrelevant whether he knew the figure on whom the mural was made.
Russian cities have been decorated with giant murals of players like Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar during the world cup.
In the city of Kazan, Republic of Tatarstan, Russia, there's a mural. Beyond that, and these photos, I'm speechless. pic.twitter.com/T112BX0krc— Jim Beaver (@jumblejim) February 10, 2017