There is perhaps no greater piece of design that takes a universal drubbing quite like the Olympics. Maybe it’s because it comes around just enough every few years that we have something we can all pan together in perfect harmony—that’s about as close as we’ll ever come to reaching world peace.
So maybe that’s why the Olympic committee decided to let the world have the final say?
For the first time ever, the Olympic committee pitted two designs against one another for the Milano Cortina 2026 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games and selected the logo via a popular vote. Garnering over 870,000 votes, the “Futura” design bested “Logo Dada” with its snowflake and green and red “26.”
The Futura design is also supposedly a nod to sustainability and inclusion, in that the “26” is one drawn in one continuous line. In commercial spots unveiling the new identity, you witness a child tracing the 26 onto a foggy window, and it becomes a window into the wide world of winter sports. For the Paralympics logo, the 26 comes in red, blue, and green (the colors for the games) and takes on some characteristics of the Aurora Borealis, as you can sometimes catch a glimpse of them from the Italian Alps.
“Congratulations to Milano Cortina 2026 on its new emblem. Influenced by the themes of sport, solidarity, and sustainability, ‘Futura’ illustrates a dynamic and modern design that reflects some of the fundamental values of its Olympic and the Paralympic Winter Games,” said IOC’s Milano Cortina 2026 Coordination Commission Chair Sari Essayah about the design.
— Milano Cortina 2026 🇮🇹 (@milanocortina26) March 7, 2021
“Milano Cortina 2026’s strategy for a people-centric Games builds on the belief that we are stronger together – evident in its engagement of the wider public in this decision-making process,” she added. “Its determination to make Italy fall in love with the Games and the world to fall in love with Italy has been evident throughout this global initiative. We’re certain this affection will continue to grow over the next five years, inspired by this unique emblem design.”
As far as Olympic logos go, well, it could be much worse. But, hey, at least it’s not the Rome 1960 logo of two suckling wolf pups, am I right?