The 2016 Olympic Games Logo – A Representation of Rio’s People and Environment

Rio Olympics 2016

The 2016 Olympic Games in Rio is all about bringing people together and celebrating the environment. A closer look into the design of the logo, by Fred Gelli.

The 2016 Olympic Games are fast approaching and this year it will be held in Rio De Janeiro in Brazil on August 5th. The logo was designed by Fred Gelli, a Brazilian local from Sao Paulo. The rationale behind the design is about people uniting together and an expression of the environment, with a combined creative direction from over 100 people who were involved.

Reports say that Rio is far from ready to host the games, with their current political chaos, a recession that the country is struggling to cope with and the recent spread of the Zika virus. As a result, these factors are seriously affecting ticket sales, with the games only months away. Inflation is soaring, people are losing their jobs and purchasing a ticket to a sporting game is not a priority for most. It is said that more than 20 per cent of people live below the poverty line in Brazil, so there’s a real push for ticket sales through tourism and encouraging international spectators.

Fred Gelli has been a designer for 25 years and he gets his inspiration from working with nature. He states “I am not merely trying to bring the shape of a leaf to an object. Instead, I am constantly trying to understand how nature thinks and approaches each different challenge”. A member of his creative team is a biologist, and this is because they want to understand how nature works in order to make the right business decisions. But how does nature relate to business? Gelli describes business much like an ecosystem, where people exchange information and services, and value is not just found for the business owner, but for everyone working together.

2016 Olympic Games Logo Sketch

Rio Logo



So what was the rationale behind the logo? Gelli wanted the logo to be about ‘humans’, a strong icon of people hugging which is something that everyone can understand. Once it was created in a 3D shape, they tried to find a link between people embracing each other, and Sugarloaf mountain – the most famous mountain in Brazil, best known for its panoramic views.

The logo took many attempts (50 to be exact), with over 100 people working on the development. Feedback on the logo was given from people in the IT department, through to receptionists to ensure there was a well rounded response to the concepts.

The design is a representation of the countries environment, people, heart and soul. Gelli suggests there is a future in the country’s creative industry, with the potential to harness innovation and optimisation of creative design.

Olga Dumitriu
Client Account Executive
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Image Credits: Tátil, designboom.










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