so i went to china for three months and i watched the olympics on my television. so i could not help but feel a little inspired by many designs generated for the olympics. i mean do you even remember the mascot of the previous olympic? or do u even remember how its symbol looked like? i tink i definitely wont forget the fu was and the pictograms of the beijing olympics.
these four pictures are common jokes found online as to how the beijing olympic emblem was created. though amusing, it actually shows the artist’s design concept. if you were to google on the story and the intended message of the emblem, you would get the idea of how every emblem of the Olympics tells a story. This emblem is the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games emblem “Chinese Seal, Dancing Beijing” is filled with Beijing’s hospitality and hopes, and carries the city’s commitment to the world.
“Dancing Beijing” is a milestone of the Olympics. It serves as a classic chapter of the Olympic epic inscribed by the spirit of the Chinese nation, calligraphed by the deeper import of the ancient civilization, and molded by the character of Cathay’s descendents. It is concise yet deep inside, bringing forth the city’s gradual changes and development. It appears dignified yet bears a tune of romance, reflecting the nation’s thoughts and emotions.
In the lead up to the Beijing 2008 Olympics, the emblem will attract more and more people from around the world to Beijing and China to join the great celebration with the Chinese people.
“Dancing Beijing” is a Chinese Seal. It is engraved with commitment made to the Olympic Movement by a country that has 56 ethnic groups and a population of 1.3 billion. While witnessing the advocacy of the Olympic Spirit by a nation with both ancient civilization and modern culture, it also unfolds a future-oriented city’s pursuit of the Olympic Ideal.
It is a symbol of trust and an expression of self confidence, standing for the solemn yet sacred promise that Beijing – the host city of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games – has made to the world and to all mankind.
“Complete sincerity can affect even metal and stone (literally meaning sincerity smoothes the way to success).” The inception of our ancestors’ wisdom and the image of a seal made of metal and stone allow the emblem to present Chinese people’s respect and honesty for the Olympics.
The moment we earnestly imprint the emblem with the “Chinese seal”, Beijing is about to show the world a grand picture of “peace, friendship, and progress of mankind” and to strike up the passionate movement of “faster, higher, and stronger” for mankind.
“Dancing Beijing” serves as the city’s foremost appearance. It is an image that shows the eastern ways of thinking and the nation’s lasting appeal embodied in the Chinese characters. It is an expression that conveys the unique cultural quality and elegance of Chinese civilization.
With inspiration from the traditional Chinese art form – calligraphic art, the character “Jing” (the latter of the city’s name) is developed into the form of a dancing human being, reflecting the ideal of a “New Olympics”. The words “Beijing 2008” also resembles the vivid shapes of Chinese characters in handwriting, voicing in concise strokes of the countless feelings Chinese people possess towards the Olympics.
As people ponder on the rich connotations and charms of these Chinese characters, a “New Beijing” has thus been brought forward.
“Dancing Beijing” is a favorite color of the Chinese people. The color “red” is intensively used in the emblem, pushing the passion up to a new level. It carries Chinese people’s longing for luck and happiness and their explanation of life.
Red is the color of the Sun and the Holy Fire, representing life and a new beginning. Red is mind at ease, symbol of vitality, and China’s blessing and invitation to the world.
“Dancing Beijing” calls upon heroes. Olympic Games functions as the stage where heroes are made known, miracles created and glories earned, and where every participant constitutes an indispensable part of the occasion.
The powerful and dynamic design of the emblem is a life poem written by all participants with their passion, affections, and enthusiasm. It is an oath every participant takes to contribute power and wisdom to the Olympics.
The emblem cheers for arts and for the Olympic heroes, who pass down the essence of the Olympic Spirit, which well connects sports and cultures.
“Dancing Beijing” extends the totem of the Chinese nation. The form of a running human being stands for the beauty and magnificence of life. Its graceful curves are like the body of a wriggling dragon, relating the past and future of one same civilization; they are like rivers, carrying the century-old history and the nation’s pride; they are like veins, pulsing with vitality of life.
The intrinsic values of sports — athlete-centered and people-oriented – are well defined and upgraded in an artistic way in “the dance of Beijing.” We sing if words fail to explain it all, and we dance if the singing does not explicitly tell the meaning.
Vigorous Beijing is looking forward to the celebration in 2008 and the Olympics wait all mankind to dance together.
“Dancing Beijing” is a kind invitation. The open arms in the emblem say that China is opening its arms to welcome the rest of the world to join the Olympics, a celebration of “peace, friendship and progress of mankind.”
“Is it not a joy to have friends come from afar?” The idiom portrays the feelings of friendly and hospitable Chinese people and expresses the sincerity of the city.
Come to Beijing, take a good look at the historical heritages of China’s Capital city, and feel the pulse of the country’s modernization;
Come, share every piece of its joy, and experience the vigor of the country;
Come, and let us together weave a peaceful and wonderful dream.
I feel that this was a very effective piece of work as it successfully made use of culture and applied it to the modern society. Another great example of how the Beijing Olympic designs use old artistic concepts in modern day artworks is its use of the seals.
The Beijing Organizing Committee for the Games of the XXIX Olympiad (BOCOG) also released the Pictograms of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games on the occasion of the 2-year countdown to the opening of the Games.
One of the basic image elements of the Olympics, the Olympic Games Pictograms are widely applied in areas such as Olympic directional instruction system, advertising and communications, landscape and environmental arrangement, TV broadcasting and souvenir designs. The Pictograms play an important role in identifying the Olympic sports as well as in Olympic marketing.
Named “the beauty of seal characters” and with strokes of seal characters as their basic form, the Pictograms of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games integrate pictographic charm of inscriptions on bones and bronze objects in ancient China with simplified embodiment of modern graphics, making them recognizable, rememberable and easy to use. Skillfully using the effect of sharp contrast between the black and white colors which the typical Chinese traditional artistic form of rubbings have, the Pictograms of the Beijing Olympic Games display distinct motion character, graceful aesthetic perception of movement and rich cultural connotations, thus arriving at the harmony and unity of form with conception.
The Beijing Olympics Pictograms comprise of 35 sport icons, namely those of athletics, rowing, badminton, baseball, basketball, boxing, canoe / kayak flatwater, canoe / kayak slalom, cycling, equestrian, fencing, football, artistic gymnastics, rhythmic gymnastics, trampoline, weightlifting, handball, hockey, judo, wrestling, swimming, synchronized swimming, diving, water polo, modern pentathlon, softball, taekwondo, tennis, table tennis, shooting, archery, triathlon, sailing, volleyball and beach volleyball.
In March 2005, BOCOG invited four professional design institutes and organizations to the solicitation campaign of Pictograms of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games. The design based on “seal characters” by China Central Academy of Fine Arts and that on “string” by Academy of Arts and Design, Tsinghua University were shortlisted after experts’ appraisal.
A joint design working group between China Central Academy of Fine Arts and Academy of Arts and Design constantly improved and perfected the design in accordance with the suggestions of BOCOG and experts home and abroad.
In December 2005, BOCOG submitted the Beijing Olympic Pictograms to the 28 International Sports Federations (IFs) for approval, and all of IFs had endorsed the Pictograms by April 2006. And in June this year, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) granted the set of the Pictograms.
Thus in my coursework, I tried to use the idea of the pictograms in my work.
Here’s the short writeup about my theme of Trapped on my prep board:
In this piece of work, I endeavour to show how students in our school are all trapped within the cycle of work and stress. Like a plasma ball that has all its energy trapped within the walls of the ball that holds it, the students often try various ways and positions to escape, but many fail. I researched on simplified forms like those used to make the Beijing Olympics and ParaOlympic logos and thus decided that it was the best way to depict my figures. The figures in my installation are all faceless and have simplified postures. The postures are postures of ways to escape, which are namely reaching out, digging into the ground and jumping. The fact that it is a linocut allowed me to reproduce them in large amounts, thus significant of the large quantity of people who have tried or are trying. I also printed them on coloured paper to signify how all of them are actually lively and vibrant. However, as can be seen in the installation, many have tried to escape but have failed and thus lie on the grounds of the cage which hold them. Those who are still hanging remain coloured on one side and blank on the other to symbolize how in the process of reaching out for one’s aims, many have become mundane and single- sided. Pasting white paper also serves as a practical purpose: to make the figures tougher. I decided to hang them in a cage with a lock to show how they are trapped and are unable to escape.