Dezeen Magazine

Architectural landmarks star in "utopian" poster for Paris 2024 Olympics

French artist Ugo Gattoni has created a duo of intricately hand-drawn posters for the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games, which can function independently or combine seamlessly to create a single composition.

It marks the first time that posters for both summer games were designed together as a diptych, according to the Paris 2024 Organising Committee.

Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic poster by Ugo Gattoni
Ugo Gattoni has designed the poster for the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games

The posters tell a singular story about the games via a hyperreal depiction of Paris incorporating 47 Olympic and Paralympic sports alongside various architectural landmarks.

"When I was asked to design the iconic posters for Paris 2024, I immediately imagined a city-stadium open to the world, a suspended time in which you can wander through microcosms where Parisian monuments and sporting disciplines joyfully coexist," Gattoni said.

Paris 2024 Olympic poster
One half of the poster is dedicated to the Olympics

His aim was to create a series of micro-stories based around familiar Paris monuments such as the Eiffel Tower, the Grand Palais, the Arc de Triomphe and the Trocadéro, where British studio Gustafson Porter + Bowman is adding an amphitheatre and a green corridor in preparation for the games.

In Gattoni's condensed version of Paris, these landmarks rub shoulders with some of the sporting venues that will be used for the games including the Stade de France, which will host the athletics, Para athletics and rugby sevens.

Paris 2024 Paralympic Poster
The other side focuses on the Paralympics

The river Seine is represented along with some of its famous bridges including Pont Neuf and Pont Alexandre III. The coast of Teahupo'o in Tahiti, French Polynesia, where the surfing events will be held, is pictured in the background.

Gattoni – an illustrator and former swimmer known for his large-format works that can take months or even years to complete – spent more than 2,000 hours creating the illustration used for the posters.

"For me, this design has to be timeless," he said. "It is based on the golden ratio and has a strong academic foundation with a lot of architecture. Its originality lies in its surreal and utopian aspect, both in its composition and in the thousands of details that feature in it."

Also included in the detailed fresco are several symbols related to the games, such as the Olympic rings and the symbol of the Paralympic Games, the three agitos.

The Paris 2024 mascots – modelled on Phrygian caps – are playfully integrated into the scene in multiple places, along with the gold-medal-shaped emblem designed for the games, which was unveiled in 2019.

The symmetrical Olympic Torch created for the games by designer Mathieu Lehanneur can be seen emerging from the water at one end of a pier. At the opposite end, a hand holds the Paris 2024 medals, which feature a real piece of the Eiffel Tower.

Olympic and Paralympic poster by Ugo Gattoni
The illustration is also available as a colouring poster

Some 40,000 characters are depicted in the posters, with an equal number of men and women in the foreground to symbolise the equality of the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

Iconic posters have been developed for each edition of the Olympics since the 1912 Stockholm games, with famous examples including Yusaku Kamekura's rising sun graphic for the Tokyo 1964 Olympics and Otl Aicher's design depicting the architecture created for the Munich games of 1972.

More recently, the Organising Committee has invited several different artists to design posters for each edition of the games. Thirteen designs were produced for Rio 2016, while artists including Tracey Emin, Martin Creed and Rachel Whiteread created posters for the London 2012 Games.