Calgary 1988 – Look of the Games

Designer: Justason & Tavender


The Organising Committee had announced a competition to find the main design theme and thus also the unmistakable, uniform Look of the Games. The pri- mary goal of the design theme was to combine the Olympic rings with the motto “Come Together in Calgary”. Remember: the official emblem of these Games, a stylised snowflake with the outline of a maple leaf, is formed by interlocking large and small “C” letters, which stand for Calgary and Canada; in addition there are the Olympic rings and the stroke “Calgary 1988”. The motto is also included in the emblem. The design theme of Calgary 1988 is essentially based on four cornerstones: the Olympic rings (more precisely: one of them), a circle and a large and a small “C”, which together form the (Olympic) ring. These four elements form the kit of parts. The so-called small circle's composition allows the visual representation by graphic patterns of circles in three different sizes. It was required that the circles be centred on the intersection points of the grid. The circle patterns were used as compositional components that complemented the elements of the kit. The elements could thus be used to create 16 different arrangements in the 15 colours of the official colour palette, in two and three dimensions, horizontally and vertically. The decoration of the venues, the city and its surroundings was called pageantry. This included all design elements, the colour palette for banners and signs as well as the graphic material for both the sports events and the Olympic arts festival.