Exploring The Look of The Games

During the Olympic Games, the host country welcomes the whole world.

Its aim is to make this grand occasion a success, starting with a dazzling opening ceremony.

In terms of sport, the host country naturally has to provide all the infrastructure for the competitions to be held with the necessary levels of comfort and security, for athletes and visitors alike.

In terms of image, the host country puts its creativity to work, to highlight its culture and most typical features. When combined with the Olympic rings, this creates a unique identity for each edition of the Games, a visual signature within the country and around the world during the event itself, and subsequently a recognisable signature within the history of the Olympic Games.

Come on a journey with us through our programme devoted
to the Look of the Games!

"When you deal with the Olympics
 you are dealing with everyone in the world"

Deborah Sussman
Graphic design of the Los Angeles 1984 Games


A web-doc to delve into the fascinating history of the Look of the Games


“Olympic Language: Exploring the Look of the Games” exhibition in the “Focus” area (level 1)

The exhibition route begins with the birth and evolution of the Olympic rings, now one of the world’s most widely recognised logos!
Created in 1913, they have travelled through the years, reaching their latest graphic incarnation in 2010.

Then move on to the various island displays designed to draw you into the graphic universe and creative process of seven emblematic editions of the Games:

  • Tokyo 1964 where graphic art, design and Japan are intimately linked

  • Mexico City 1968 with its hypnotic lines and typical Mexican colours used on everything

  • Munich 1972 where everything is aligned, integrated and designed down to the smallest detail

  • Los Angeles 1984 which sees eighties colours dominate large californian areas

  • Lillehammer 1994 where Norwegian traditions and landscape come to the fore

  • Athens 2004 with a modern, stylised version of its Ancient Greek heritage

  • London 2012 typified by its vanishing lines and vibrant colours

Copyright: TrivialMass

Copyright: TrivialMass


After that comes the 12-metre multimedia wall showing a timeline of 21 editions of the Games, from Paris 1900 to Rio 2016: here, the Look of the Games is seen from the angle of the spirit and creativity of the period.

Then an emblem game to test your knowledge…

Move on to a Look of the Games still being created: that of the Winter Youth Olympic Games Lausanne 2020.

Outside the exhibition, in the park:

Homage to the 50th anniversary of Mexico City 1968, with the giant balls that played a signage role at the time in the Mexican capital; and the dove banners decorating the columns of the forecourt.

“Your face here” boards with various Games mascots for some fun photos to share.

An inflatable eight-metre Cobi, the Barcelona 1992 mascot, greets visitors from the Museum roof.

Exhibition of photos on how the Look of the Games appeared in different cities.

Not forgetting the podium decorated in the striking colours of Los Angeles 1984, an ideal spot for a quick photo.

And that’s not all: inside the Museum, in the “Art Lounge”, a look at the exceptional Mexico City 1968 cultural programme, with a presentation of the original posters!

And once again, because they are so impressive, the Mexico City 1968 balloons, like giant soap bubbles in the central light well.

Olympic Language: Mascots’ Club exhibition in the Galerie (level 2)

Copyright: TrivialMass

Amik: the Montreal 1976 beaver 
Roni: the Lake Placid 1980 raccoon
Misha: the Moscow 1980 bear
The Snowlets: the Nagano 1998 owls
Hodori: the Seoul 1988 tiger
Hidy & Howdy: the Calgary 1988 polar bears
Syd, Olly & Millie: the Sydney 2000 platypus, kookaburra and echidna
Athena & Phevos: the Athens 2004 dolls
Neve & Gliz: the Turin 2006 snowball and ice cube

They are all here to show that the mascots are also part of the Look of the Games ecosystem.
They encapsulate both the local touch of the host country and the Olympic spirit.

Endearing, fun and full of life, they bring the public closer to the Games and make for popular souvenirs.

Copyright: TrivialMass

Schools programme “Olympic Language: Design your Games!”

1) Visit the exhibitions with:
- a printed guide (independent visit)
- or a tablet with suggested routes and activities
 Printed guide
 Reservation form

2) Multimedia workshop - Create your own poster design for the Winter Youth Olympic Games Lausanne 2020, in the “Studio” (level 1)

 Reservation form

 For more information

Cultural events “You’ve got the Look!”

  • Talk “The visual identity of the Olympic Games Mexico City 1968”: 24 May 2018 (ECAL)
    With Beatrice Trueblood and Eduardo Terrazas, two leading members of the Mexico City 1968 creative team 
    In collaboration with the ECAL (Lausanne Cantonal Art School)
     More details here
  • Mexico City 50th anniversary special weekend: Saturday 26 and Sunday 27 May 2018
    Films, mini-visits and fashion show
     More details here

Family activities “You’ve got the Look!”


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