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The Visual Identity of the 1972 Munich Olympics

The Visual Identity of the 1972 Munich Olympics

An impressive blend of mid-century inspired design and artistic elegance, the branding of the 1972 Munich Olympic Games was a groundbreaking departure from traditional Olympic aesthetics.

The Logo

At the heart of the 1972 Munich Olympics' visual identity was its logo, designed by renowned graphic designer Otl Aicher and his team of designers. The emblem featured a stylized representation of the Olympic rings, creatively integrated with a radiant sunburst. The simplicity of the design allowed for easy recognition and instant association with the event, solidifying its place in Olympic history.

The Colours

Another notable aspect of the Munich Olympics' visual identity was the vibrant use of rainbow colours throughout the branding. Symbolizing unity and diversity, this colour palette conveyed a powerful message of inclusivity, welcoming athletes and spectators from all corners of the globe.

The Pictograms

The 1972 Munich Olympics were the first to introduce a set of pictograms, an innovative concept that has since become a standard feature in the Olympic Games. These simple and elegant pictorial representations of each sport effectively conveyed information to international audiences, transcending language barriers.


The typography used in the Munich Olympics' branding balanced modern aesthetics and a touch of tradition. The clean, sans-serif typefaces provided a contemporary appeal, while subtle nods to classic letterforms maintained a connection to the Games' historical roots.

Architecture & Wayfinding

Beyond printed materials, the visual identity extended to the architecture and wayfinding elements of the Olympic venues. Aicher's design principles were consistently applied, ensuring a cohesive and immersive experience for athletes and visitors alike.

Legacy & Influence

The impact of the 1972 Munich Olympics' visual identity extended beyond its immediate context. Its innovative approach and emphasis on simplicity, inclusivity, and functionality have influenced subsequent Olympic Games' branding, leaving a lasting legacy in the world of design.

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