Tuesday, 5 June 2007

London 2012

The logo for the next-but-one Olympics has been unveiled and feck me it's vile. One of the nastiest, clunkiest pieces of graphic design I've seen in a while, hard on the eye, difficult to understand and visually assimilate, and trying far too hard to be 'edgy' and different. Er, I mean, representative of London's vibrant modern outlook and the new digital age.

Here you go:

Apparently the '0' represents the shape of the city. It is 'suitable for use on mobile phones' and comes in different colours too, you'll be glad to hear, a snip at just £400,000 in fees.
Apparently this is going to "help engage young people," presumably operating on the assumption that 'young people', that mythical and incomprehensible yet invaluable market segment, are all blind dunderheads endowed with all the taste and discrimination of a hungry vulture. Oh no, wait, young people are like bumblebees, easily attracted by pretty bright colours, while everyone knows that Corners and Angles are officially Cooler than a Really Cool Celebrity's Freezer.

According to The Guardian,
The organisation said that the new emblem aims to be "dynamic, modern and flexible" and "will work with new technology and across traditional and new media networks".

"London 2012 is inspired by you and it's for all of you," said Lord Coe, the chairman of the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games. "My pledge is that I will make these everyone's games."

"We will host a games where everyone is invited to join in because they are inspired by the games to either take part in the many sports, cultural, educational and community events up to 2012 or they will be inspired to achieve personal goals," he added.

I strongly suspect, myself, that everyone is NOT invited to join in. If I pop down with my swimming cossie are they going to ask me to join in the freestyle relay, perhaps? And what's all this personal goals bollocks? 'Inspired by a lot of men in lycra running quite fast I have decided that now is the time to clean really thoroughly behind the sofa, even hoovering underneath and hand-washing all the cushion covers.' Maybe he has a more grandiose vision: 'After watching the Cuban Ladies' Volleyball Team and their remarkable pneumatic bottoms I feel inspired to write a verse commemoration of the Battle of Trafalgar, incorporating latest naval history thinking and single-handedly reviving the popularity of Epic Poetry.'

The ridiculous overblown pomposity of the rhetoric attached to the logo does, of course, serve the useful purpose of detracting attention from the logo itself. Both are equally demanding of our ridicule and incomprehension. The logo has been met with almost universal derision, from designers and the public alike. Stephen Bayley, founder of the Design Museum, described it as feeble, a "puerile mess, an artistic flop and a commercial scandal." Fair enough. If you were a British graphic designer you'd be rightly incensed at this representing your industry to the world. Still, as has been observed, we've got 5 years to get used to the damn thing, maybe by then it won't look so bad.


punk said...

se vedo bene
sembra che si legge LOR

claude said...

Perhaps it is rather clever. Like London, it is supposed to be an amazing thing of which to be proud on an international scale, and is in fact ugly, messy, incoherent and prohibitively expensive.

Antonio Gurrado said...

I saw it in the newspaper this morning at 8 and I realized it had the shape of the figures 2 0 1 2 towards noon. But possibly it was just me not working, not it.


TrentToffee said...

It's attrcating a lot of comment (and getting a bit of a battering) on the bulletin boards in the Times. Some of the comments are quite funny...


...a typical example being "For me it says ZOR every time I look at it". And fuck me doesn't Seb Coe speak some awful guff.

A sign of what's to come ? I hope not. Otherwise the 2012 Olympics will be truly awful :o(

I didn't want the poxy games anyway.

claude said...

On reflection, it looks upsettingly like a rejected David Bowie single-cover around the Let's Dance era.

(Put on your red shoes and dance the blues.)

martinobhoy said...

To be fair the Sydney Opera House wasn't liked at first......

But seriously I didn't even realise it was meant to be 2012 until I read it in an article and the word London is almost an aside.