Munich 1972 – Emblem

Designer: Otl Aicher & Coordt von Mannstein


As the Games emblem competition had not produced the desired result, a solution was sought. Those responsible wanted a generally understandable, simple, archetypal sign that could be integrated into the formal code of the rest of the design concept. The solution was finally found in a variant of the original design of a wreath of rays by Otl Aicher. A graphic team from Cologne, consisting of Hans Buschfeld, Siegfried Himmer, Winfried Holtz, Heinz Lippert and Coordt von Mannstein, developed a spiral-shaped wreath of rays, which – in conjunction with the Olympic rings – was finally adopted as the official emblem of the Munich Games and from then on also enjoyed legal protection. The last three designs included Aicher’s wreath of rays, the spiral of the Cologne team and a suggestion from Dürer’s alphabet, the letters “D” and “M”. The construction of the emblem, the spacing, colour variations and combinations with lettering were explained in detail in the design manual “Richtlinien und Normen für die visuelle Gestaltung”.