By Molly Gorman
Chelsea FC have launched their Club Culture programme, with the latest installment in the series developed with COPA90.
Launched for the 2021/22 season, the project brings the club and London culture together through standout partnerships and initiatives, with a shared attitude, belief and ambition, each inspired by the other.
Club Culture will feature an array of creative collaborations which spotlight Chelsea Football Club as the Pride of London. The platform will establish a new standard in crossover creativity - fusing the worlds of football, fashion, music and culture, and positioning the club as an enabler and amplifier of London Culture in football.
The next installment in the Club Culture series is titled A Family Portrait, which was designed to shine a light on and bring together exciting creative talent both inside and surrounding the club.
This unique portrait series is captured by avid Chelsea fan and creative director Diogo Lopes. It acts as a time capsule to document the end of 2021 - a huge year in Chelsea Football Club's history. It showcases a mix of faces from the club’s community, players, fans and creators as they unite as equals, forming an extended creative family and entertaining fans in the process.
A Family Portrait features star players and celebrated creators, including Mason Mount, Reece James, N’Golo Kante, Kepa Arrizabalagaa, Lauren James, Ji So-Yun, Carly Telford, Emma Thompson, Felicia Pennant, Ocean Lewis, Iqra Ismail, Kelvyn Quagraine, Diogo Lopes, Jamal Edwards, Capo Lee and Sam Pemberton.
Part of the familial feel of the club is rooted in how Chelsea FC support, develop and nurture young talent through the Chelsea Football Academy, which operates for age groups under 9 through to under 23. Lauren James (20), Mason Mount (22) and Reece James (22), who feature in the portrait, came into the team through the academy. Emma Thompson, who also features, is currently an academy player. Lauren, who was signed to the women’s team in summer 2021, said, “Family means everything. So, anything you do is to make them proud and happy.” The homegrown talent really shapes the club’s success, and emphasises how it really is a family affair.
Carly Telford has illustrated how the club’s success ties into the great relationships the players have with each other - the Chelsea women’s team have had storming success this year, with winning the 2020/2021 FA Women’s Super League in May being just one of the highlights - “Family is the place I go to if I want to feel happy. For us, we are family, we spend more time with each other than we do our own families. Without knowing it, you just enter into this family that takes you on a journey.”
“Ultimately, we are here to win things at this club, and when we do it is worth it. The fact that we have won three trophies this year, is a big testament to our little family that we have created. When we won the league, it was a pretty special year to be able to complete that.”
View Chelsea FC’s Year to Remember here
Polaroid portraits: Diogo Lopes
BTS shots: Sam Pemberton