Rio 2016 branding

Brazil Olympic Games Emblem
Like many designers, and especially living in London, I have been particularly interested in the branding of Rio 2016.
If you remember, correctly there was a massive furore when the Wolff Olins London 2012 logo was released back in 2007. Some loved it, some hated it, but it kick-started what was to be the metro style that Microsoft adopted a few years later. Well, I digress.

Back to the subject.

On first impressions, it does remind you of the “the dance” by Matisse:


But on researching it a little more, you can see that a lot more effort went into the design of the logo than just rehashing the style of Matisse’s painting.

There was also some controversy surrounding the fact that the logo had some similarities to an American Charities logo; however, the Rio 2016 logo is 100x better than the version it meant to have copied, and I doubt the designer would care.

Firstly, the three figures’ shape is designed to reflect Sugar Loaf mountain, one of Rio’s most iconic landmarks.


It was chosen after a bidding process between over 100 agencies, with the agency Tatil finally winning. The three figures in the logo use the colours of the Brazilian flag – yellow, gold and blue. They are shown to be energetically dancing, which perfectly fits the spirit or essence of Rio.

And for the pièce de résistance, not only does the logo show three carioca (people from Rio) celebrating the games in their country colours, but when the logo is viewed from a particular angle, it spells out “Rio”.



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