“I Believe I can Swoosh”
The 2022 Winter Olympics, officially known as the XXIV Olympic Winter Games, and commonly known as Beijing 2022, is a multi-sport event that will take place in Beijing and towns in the neighboring Hebei province, China from 4 to 20 February 2022. It will be the third consecutive Olympic Games held in East Asia, after Pyeongchang 2018 and Tokyo 2020. Having previously hosted the 2008 Summer Olympics, Beijing will become the first city ever to host both the Summer and the Winter Olympic Games. It will also become the largest city ever to host the Winter Olympics, a distinction currently held by Vancouver which hosted the 2010 Winter Olympics.”
IOC press release
Inspired by 冬, the Chinese character for “winter”, the emblem resembles a skater at the top and a skier at the bottom. The flowing ribbon-like motif between them symbolises the host country’s rolling mountains, Olympic venues, ski pistes and skating rinks. It also points to the fact that the Games will coincide with the Chinese New Year.
The use of blue in the emblem represents dreams, the future and the purity of ice and snow, while red and yellow – the colours of China’s national flag – symbolise passion, youth and vitality.
[Regarding the Paralympic emblem:] Making similar use of Chinese calligraphy, the emblem incorporates the Chinese character for ‘fly’, 飞 , which conjures up the image of a wheelchair athlete surging towards the finish line and victory. As well as highlighting Chinese culture, it also embodies the spirit of the Paralympian and their quest for sporting excellence, a quest that inspires and excites the world.
Images (opinion after)
At first glance — without knowing it follows the shape of the Chinese character for winter — the new emblem looks dynamic, wintery, and sporty. I realize that is not a deep thought but I think the logo achieves the goal of looking like the Winter Olympics quite easily and efficiently. (Learning that the shape of the emblem follows the Chinese character for winer is conceptually pleasing.) It does try a little too hard with the somewhat inconsistent use of overlays and gradients versus flat-color shapes — it’s hard to tell what is what or why some swooshes are transparent and why some have gradients and why some are or have neither. The video better illustrates the execution and paves the way for the look of the Olympics but I hope they end up with something more organic as opposed to all those swooping lines that look like a bad corporate brochure. The wordmark is nice and simple with a strong calligraphic aesthetic. “BEIJING” looks really great but “2022” not so much with the “2”s running into each other. The Paralympic games is a little fuzzier without the explanation that it’s meant to represent the Chinese character for fly and, on its own, it looks like a complementary squiggle to the Olympics logo. Overall, not a great logo but one that summarizes “Winter Olympics” neatly and quickly.