The Rio 2016 Organising Committee has launched the sport pictograms for the 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
For the first time in Games history, every Olympic and Paralympic discipline will be represented by its own iconic graphic symbol, which will be used to guide and inform the public during the Games – for example on venue signposts and tickets – allowing people from all over the world to immediately identify each of the different sports.
“For the first time, all Olympic and Paralympic sports are individually represented,” said Rio 2016 President Carlos Nuzman. “This is one of our unique contributions to the history of the Games. I congratulate the creative team for their dedication and hard work together with diverse groups who contributed to this launch.”
Since Tokyo 1964, each edition of the Games has depicted the sports on its programme through iconic graphic symbols that reflect the culture of the host nation. Rio 2016’s 64 pictograms – 41 Olympic and 23 Paralympic – were inspired by the word ‘pictogram’, which means ‘painted word’.
The designs were based on the Rio 2016 font, which was launched in July 2012 and forms an integral part of the Rio 2016 brand. The athlete bodies and sports equipment depicted in the pictograms were built from the font’s characters, or part of them, in a continuous stroke, with variations in thickness in order to give the impression of depth. The pebble shapes, which enclose each pictogram, are a characteristic of Rio 2016’s visual language and alter their shape according to the athletes’ different movements, while the pictograms themselves can be produced in a variety of colours.
Rio 2016’s Brand Director, Beth Lula, explained that the pictograms are important tools in a variety of contexts. “From now until 2016, the pictograms will serve as a communication platform for the promotion of the sports, for partner activations, and will be present in all the Games’ visual identity, including their application in venue decoration, signposting, tickets and licensed products, among other things.”