With the first matches of the 2010 FIFA World Cup kicking off last week, football fanaticism is currently at a fever pitch. Today we premiere searing images of models from Brazil (the 5/1 favorites to win, alongside Spain) posing patriotically in the country’s playing
colors, as well as architectural photographs of host nation South Africa's new stadiums, in collaboration with fashion-football hybrid magazine SEPP. The magazine was launched in 2002, after creative director and football fan Markus Ebner saw an inexplicable void in the market and decided to combine his two passions in a ultra-glossy biennial, giving the beautiful game a powerful style kick. “When I started to think of stories to put the two things on the same page, it was obvious,” he says of the project. For the fifth installment of SEPP, which hits
newsstands this week, Ebner marshaled several fashion luminaries: Ellen von Unwerth contributes photographs of Germany’s rising soccer stars; Karl Lagerfeld dreams—and draws—himself into the game in a series of idiosyncratic watercolors; and Argentine icon Maradona is rendered by Anna Sui and Clinique collaborator Hiroshi Tanabe. Most impressively of all,
some of the world’s greatest fashion designers created their very own
football uniforms to be shot for the issue. While it seems unlikely that players will soon take to the pitch in Donatella Versace’s gladiator-inspired kit for Italy, Alber Elbaz’s Lanvin tunic for France or Dries Van Noten’s button-down for Belgium, SEPP provides a rare opportunity for the fashion world to score a few sartorial goals of its own.