Where Fans and Communities Unite
New Mexico United is a professional USL Championship soccer team in Albuquerque, New Mexico. They are much more than just a soccer team, they are an integral part of New Mexico’s community. New Mexico United has transformed their motto “Somos Unidos” (We are United) into a Non-Profit Foundation of the same name. New Mexico United and The Somos Unidos Foundation work together to unite New Mexico’s communities by supporting comradery, youth soccer development, local artists, and by giving back to those communities.
New Mexico United partnered with 17 local artists to design unique gameday posters for each of their home games. Each home game had a different theme such as Opening Day, NM True Night, Juneteenth Night, Pride Night, and Hispanic Heritage Month, just to name a few. The purpose of the posters was to bring art and sport together in a unique way while spotlighting local artists.
Acceptance and Inclusivity in Sports
Historically, there is a disconcerting trend that most sports teams only focus on their heterosexual male audience, leaving underrepresented and marginalized audiences feeling left out or unwelcome at sporting events. I partnered with New Mexico United for the Pride Night game poster to make sure everyone in attendance would feel accepted and welcome. My entertaining and bright style would perfectly represent the proud and vibrant LGBTQIA+ community. Our goal for the poster was to represent soccer, but more importantly, the poster would celebrate and support the LGBTQIA+ community in New Mexico.
During the research phase, I reached out to LGBTQIA+ groups to find out what they truly value in the community. Some value the passion and strong family-like bonds that are formed when participating in Drag shows. Others shared how the community comes together, especially younger people, to support, celebrate, and inspire each other. Pride flags are known as essential symbols to show pride for yourself and your community. Using this knowledge, I included a Drag Queen and local Drag King, Trey C. Michaels, in the design. I also included many cheering fans sharing their love for the LGBTQIA+ community and soccer by proudly embodying their unique pride flags, grasping soccer balls, and the phrase “Somos Orgillo” (We are Pride).
Record Breaking Results
The end result was a bright and vibrant poster that incorporated all the diverse races, genders, and cultures that make New Mexico United fans extraordinary. By highlighting and combining important LGBTQIA+ elements with New Mexico United elements, we collaborated to create an artwork that was a great success among fans. The Pride Night game (June 25th, 2022) set a new attendance record for 2022 with 12,547 fans in attendance. This game broke attendance records for New Mexico United since their inaugural season in 2018. It was a wonderful experience collaborating with New Mexico United and the LGBTQIA+ community!