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The best Olympic logos of all time, according to design experts

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This year’s Olympics have a confusing logo for a confusing time. After delaying the Games last year to curb the spread of COVID-19, Olympic organizers opted against updating the logo for 2021. The resulting identity, a checkered circle featuring the year 2020, manages to feel both dated and all too relevant—a glaring reminder that COVID-19 remains a clear and present threat.

It wasn’t always thus. The Olympics have produced some of the most exciting brand identities of the past century. Take Lance Wyman’s Op Art-inspired branding for the 1968 Mexico City Olympics, which still figures prominently throughout the city more than 50 years after the final gold medal was hung. The Olympics have long enabled host cities to communicate their hopes and ambitions to the world, and the best Olympic logos are like a welcoming committee, enticing viewers to learn more.

We asked six prominent graphic designers to identify the greatest Olympic logos of all time. Their picks range from Wyman’s iconic 1968 branding to Tokyo’s other (decidedly more successful) logo for the 1964 Games.

A giant red sun—perhaps symbolic of the rebirth of Japan after World War II—rises above the golden Olympic rings. It’s a symbol of renewal, hope, and the ideals of the Summer Olympics. But it’s also an instantly recognizable and memorable symbol for the Games, which is a key requirement for an........

© Fast Company

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