Beijing 2008 – Look of the Games

Designer: Design Team from the China Central Academy of Fine Arts (CAFA) & the Academy of Arts and Design, Tsinghua University


The core graphics of the Look of the Games are a joint work of the design team of CAFA and the Academy of Arts and Design of Tsinghua University, the latter having submitted the first proposals. The purpose was clear: to create the central visual element of the Beijing Games in combination with and as a modern image of Chinese art and culture. The core graphics are based on three sources of inspiration: ruyi, Chinese ribbon and auspicious cloud. Ruyi is a symbol of happiness that contains all the expectations and dreams that Chinese people expect from a good life. The typical Chinese ribbon connects the whole world in the hope of common progress, while the auspicious cloud, finally, is the most stylish traditional Chinese pattern of good fortune promises, representing China’s best wishes to the world. For the core graphics/Look of the Games, the three basic elements ruyi, ribbon and auspicious cloud are merged into a single entity, a dynamic sphere that can be described as “One World One Dream” – the slogan of these Games. The symbolism is comprehensive: the sphere as an image of planet Earth, the dynamics as a mirror image of sportsmanship and striving for performance, while the lucky patterns express best wishes of the host city. The original ball of the core graphics is painted in a silk and ink-wash effect, which expresses movement and dynamics as well as elegance. Moreover, the core graphics, in addition to all the symbolism, simply acted as a kind of “glue” to hold together all the graphic elements of the Games, i.e. emblems, pictograms, mascots and the slogan of the Games.