It is through paintings such as ‘Futebol’ that Portinari expresses his true inspiration. Being an enthusiastic football player as a child, Portinari had broken his right leg, an accident which gave him a permanent limp. Portinari painted various versions of a football game at different stages of his life. The one chosen for the Official Art Print Edition 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™ depicts a children's football game on the red earth typical of the coffee plantations of the artist’s childhood.
Candido Portinari (1903-1962) is one of the most important Brazilian painters of the 20th century. Portinari's works can be found in galleries and settings in Brazil and abroad, ranging from the family chapel in his childhood home in Brodowski to his panels ‘Guerra e Paz’ (‘War and Peace’) in the United Nations building in New York.
The range and sweep of his output is quite remarkable. It includes images of childhood, paintings depicting rural and urban labour, and refugees fleeing the hardships of Brazil's rural north-east. Portinari chose many key events in the history of Brazil since the arrival of the Portuguese in 1500 as his subjects. One constant in Portinari's art was his desire to capture the everyday life of indigenous Brazil. There were a number of commemorative events in the centenary of his birth in 2003, including an exhibition of his work in London. Portinari died in Rio de Janeiro in 1962 of lead poisoning from his paints.