AAJ Press
Art & Public Space, Art Projects

Art & Football: Partick Thistle Artist Collaboration


26/11/15... ROYAL EXCHANGE SQUARE - GLASGOW Partick Thistle David Amoo with Frederic Frans

Jon Rubin. Scarf. 
Partick Thistle FC. David Amoo with Frederic Frans

Partick Thistle FC based in Glasgow, together with its main sponsor, Kingsford Capital Management has continued to blur the lines between sport and art with the latest of its creative giveaways, exclusive to Thistle fans.

Having already collaborated with David Shrigley and Barry McGee Thistle’s game against Motherwell this Saturday will see the club team up with Pittsburgh-based artist, Jon Rubin, who has designed limited edition scarves that will be given away to Thistle fans on Saturday.

The first 2,000 Thistle fans through the turnstiles will receive the limited edition scarfs to take home with them completely free of charge on arrival at the game at Firhill on December 5th.

With “You Don’t Know Who You Are” on one side, and “We Are Thistle” on the other, the scarf is the next in the series of giveaways planned by the club in collaboration with other world-renowned artists. The last giveaway on 03/10/2015 was a football designed by graffiti artist, Barry McGee.

The innovative idea of partnering art and football was the brainchild of California-based Mike Wilkins, managing partner of the Jags’ main sponsor, Kingsford Capital Management. The aim was to create a genuine work of art which would appeal to both football fans and art lovers.

Barry McGee Fantastic Footballs ptfc

Barry McGee. Fantastic Footballs

Jon Rubin’s scarf follows David Shrigley design of the abrasive mascot, Kingsley and San Franscisco based graffiti artist Barry McGee’s fantastic football.

David Shrigley, Kingsford. Partick Thistle FC

David Shrigley, Kingsford. Partick Thistle FC Mascot


David Shrigley. Kingsford. Partick Thistle FC


Partick Thistle FC

“The scarf is supposed to be a practical, hands on piece of art that people can enjoy looking at but can also use when they come to Firhill to support Thistle. More than anything else I hope supporters enjoy wearing them and really buy into the concept.”

Jon Rubin, whose past work includes a project which saw him start a radio station in an abandoned neighbourhood that played only the sound of an extinct bird, jumped at the opportunity to be part of the project.

“I mostly create works in the public realm, so found the idea of creating a giveaway for Partick Thistle fans an unique opportunity and challenge. I’m quite excited to be part of this project.”

““This is the second giveaway like this and there will be several more between now and the end of the season. With our weather, it’s a practical piece of art which also reinforces some of the messages we have been putting out there as a club like #WeareThistle. I for one hope to see these scarves coming back to Firhill for several years to come and I’m sure our fans will really get on board and support what we’re trying to do.” Ian Maxwell


partick thistle

David Shrigley’s Foam Thumb modelled by Partick Thistle players  Ryan Edwards (L) and Tomas Cerny (R)

David Shrigley designed a foam thumb for supporters to take away at a game against Dundee United. This was the fifth of a series of artist collaborations with Partick Thistle FC. The image of the foam thumb relates to a 5-metre high bronze thumb commissioned for the Fourth Plinth,Trafalgar Square London, in September 2016.

As the sixth and final part of the art gifts to fans, photographer Martin Parr took the idea of the traditional team photo and located the squad in one of the older, grittier locations of the ground.The first 2000 fans through the turnstiles received the limited edition collectible to take home with them for free at the match with Hamilton Academicals.

In season 2015/16 Partick Thistle fans received limited edition footballs designed by Barry McGee, scarves designed by Jon Rubin, a special yellow card by Jonathan Monk, a seat cushion by Kota Ezawa, a foam finger designed by David Shrigley, and a team photograph by Martin Parr.





About jeh

Jeremy Hunt is Director of the AAJ Press (Art & Architecture Journal / Press) – a writer and consultant on art and public space


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