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Looking Back At 120 Years Of Olympic Poster Design [100 Posters]

Looking Back at 120 Years of Olympic Poster Design [100 Posters]

You might remember our collection of all Olympic logos from 1924 to 2020, this time we looked into history between 1896 and 2014 and collected all Olympic posters. This collection includes 87 Olympic posters. Since many Olympics had several posters, I tried to find and select the best ones. I hope that this collection will give you an idea of how poster design have changed over the time.

From this collection you can see that 1960 Winter Olympics were the first that moved away from ancient motives and sculptures toward graphic elements. I don’t know if design in general changes around the same time but we can see that it changed Olympic posters forever.

Another turning point is around 1992 Winter Olympics when design become abstract and much simpler. Less colors and pure white background. This is something still trending in Sochi Olympic and other regular poster design.

Another great example is from 1968 Summer Olympics, when first icons were introduced that represented each Olympic discipline and they are used since. Check Sochi for example. It would be interesting to know if Mexico come up with this idea or come from International Olympic Committee.

City that seriously nailed Olympic poster design was Munich in 1972 Summer Olympics. These posters could be used today and no one would notice that they were designed over 40 years ago. One of them looks similar to Nexus 7 background wallpapers.

If you feel that some Olympic poster is missing, please let us know which ones is it and I will update this list. Otherwise, enjoy this collection and leave your comments below.

1896 Summer Olympics – Games of The I Olympiad – Athens, Greece

1896-Athens-Summer-Olympic-Games-Poster-Cover-of-Report
1896 – Athens Summer Olympics

1900 Summer Olympics – Games of the II Olympiad – Paris, France

1900-Paris-Summer-Olympic-Games-Poster
1900 Summer Olympics – Paris, France

1904 Summer Olympics – Games of the III Olympiad – St. Luis, United States

1904-St.-Luis-Summer-Olympic-Games-Poster
1904 Summer Olympics – St. Luis, United States

1906 Summer Olympics – Intercalated Games – Athens, Greece

1906-Athens-Intercalated-Games-Poster1
1906 Summer Olympics – Athens, Greece

1908 Summer Olympics – Games of the IV Olympiad – London, United Kingdom

1908-London-Summer-Olympic-Games-Poster
1908 Summer Olympics – London, United Kingdom
1908-London-Summer-Olympic-Games-Poster2
1908 Summer Olympics – London, United Kingdom

1912 Summer Olympics – Games of the V Olympiad – Stockholm, Sweden

1912-Stockholm-Summer-Olympic-Games-Poster
1912 Summer Olympics – Stockholm, Sweden

1920 Summer Olympics – Games of the VII Olympiad – Antwerp, Belgium

1920-Antwerp-Summer-Olympic-Games-Poster-2
1920 Summer Olympics – Antwerp, Belgium
1920-Antwerp-Summer-Olympic-Games-Poster
1920 Summer Olympics – Antwerp, Belgium

1924 Summer Olympics – Games of the VIII Olympiad – Paris, France

1924-Paris-Summer-Olympic-Games-Poster
1924 Summer Olympics – Paris, France

1924 Winter Olympics – I Olympic Winter Games – Chamonix, France

1924-Winter-Olympic-Games-France-Chamonix
1924 Winter Olympics – Chamonix, France

1928 Summer Olympics – Games of the IX Olympiad – Amsterdam, The Netherlands

1928-Amsterdam-Summer-Olympics-Poster-2
1928 Summer Olympics – Amsterdam, The Netherlands
1928-Amsterdam-Summer-Olympics-Poster
1928 Summer Olympics – Amsterdam, The Netherlands

1928 Winter Olympics – II Olympic Winter Games – St. Moritz, Switzerland

1928-Winter-Olympics-St.-Moritz-Switzerland-poster
1928 Winter Olympics – St. Moritz, Switzerland

1932 Winter Olympics – Lake Placid, United States

1932-Lake-Placid-Olympics_Winter_Posters
1932 Winter Olympics – Lake Placid, United States

1932 Summer Olympics – Games of the X Olympiad – Los Angeles, United States

1932-Los-Angeles-Summer-Olympics-Poster
1932 Summer Olympics – Los Angeles, United States
1932-Olympic-Games-Los-Angeles
1932 Summer Olympics – Los Angeles, United States

1936 Summer Olympics – Games of the XI Olympiad – Berlin, Germany

1936-Germany-Berlin-Olympics
1936 Summer Olympics – Berlin, Germany

1936 Winter Olympics – IV Olympic Winter Games – Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany

1936-Olympiade-Grossflugtag-poster
1936 Winter Olympics – Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany
1936-Winter-Olympic-Games-Germany-Garmisch-Partenkirchen1
1936 Winter Olympics – Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany

1940 Summer Olympics – Games of the XII Olympiad – Helsinki, Finland

1940-Summer-Olympic-Games-Helsinki-Finland-Torch-Route-from-Garmisch-Partenkirschen-to-Helsink
1940 Summer Olympics – Helsinki, Finland

1940 Summer Olympics were cancelled due to WWII

1940-Summer-Olympic-Games-Helsinki-Finland1
1940 Summer Olympics – Helsinki, Finland

1940 Summer Olympics – Games of the XII Olympiad -Tokyo, Japan

1940 Summer Olympics were cancelled in 1938 due to Sino-Japanese War

1940-Summer-Olympic-Games-Tokyo-Japan
1940 Summer Olympics – Tokyo, Japan
1940-Summer-Olympic-Tokyo-Japan
1940 Summer Olympics – Tokyo, Japan

1948 Summer Olympics – Games of the XIV Olympiad – London, United Kingdom

1948-Summer-Olympic-Games-England-London-BEA1
1948 Summer Olympics – London, United Kingdom
1948-Summer-Olympic-Games-England-London1
1948 Summer Olympics – London, United Kingdom

1948 Winter Olympics – V Olympic Winter Games – St.Moritz, Switzerland

1948-La-Suisse-Vous-Appelle-Aux-Jeux-Olympiques-DHiver-St.Moritz
1948 Winter Olympics – St.Moritz, Switzerland
1948 Winter Olympics – St. Moritz, Switzerland Poster
1948 Winter Olympics Poster – St. Moritz, Switzerland

1952 Summer Olympics – Games of the XV Olympiad – Helsinki, Finland

1952-Summer-Olympic-Games-Helsinki-Finland1
1952 Summer Olympics – Helsinki, Finland

1952 Winter Olympics – VI Olympic Winter Games – Oslo, Norway

1952-Oslo-Olympics_Winter_Posters
1952 Winter Olympics – Oslo, Norway

1956 Summer Olympics – Games of the XVI Olympiad – Melbourne, Australia

1956-Summer-Olympic-Games-Melbourne-Australia1
1956 Summer Olympics – Melbourne, Australia

1956 Winter Olympics – VII Olympic Winter Games – Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy

1956-Winter-Olympic-Games-Italy-Cortina-dAmpezzo-Logo1
1956 Winter Olympics – Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy
1956-Winter-Olympic-Games-Italy-Cortina-dAmpezzo
1956 Winter Olympics – Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy

1960 Summer Olympics – Games of the XVII Olympiad – Rome, Italy

1960_Roma_Summer-Olympics-Poster
1960 Summer Olympics – Rome, Italy
1960-Summer-Olympic-Games-Rome-Italy-2
1960 Summer Olympics – Rome, Italy
1960-Summer-Olympic-Rome-Italy
1960 Summer Olympics – Rome, Italy

1960 Winter Olympics – VIII Olympic Winter Games – Squaw Valley, United States

1960-Squaw-Valley-CA-Olympics
1960 Winter Olympics – Squaw Valley, United States
1960-VIIIes-Jeux-Olympiques-DHiver
1960 Winter Olympics – Squaw Valley, United States

1964 Winter Olympics – IX Olympic Winter Games – Innsbruck, Austria

1964-Innsbruck-Olympics_Winter_Posters
1964 Winter Olympics – Innsbruck, Austria

1964 Summer Olympics – Games of the XVIII Olympiad – Tokyo, Japan

1964-Summer-Olympic-Games-Japan-Tokyo
1964 Summer Olympics – Tokyo, Japan

1968 Summer Olympics – Games of the XIX Olympiad – Mexico City, Mexico

1968-Mexico-Summer-Olympics-Poster
1968 Summer Olympics – Mexico City, Mexico
1968-Mexico-XIX-Olympics
1968 Summer Olympics – Mexico City, Mexico

1968 Winter Olympics – X Olympic Winter Games – Grenoble, France

1968-Grenoble-Winter-Olympics-Poster
1968 Winter Olympics – Grenoble, France
1968-X-Olympic-Winter-Games-Grenoble-Poster
1968 Winter Olympics – Grenoble, France

1972 Summer Olympics – Games of the XX Olympiad – Munich, West Germany

1972 Summer Olympics Poster
1972 Summer Olympics – Munich, West Germany
1972-Summer-Olympic-Games-Munich-Germany-2
1972 Summer Olympics – Munich, West Germany
1972-Summer-Olympic-Games-Munich-Germany3
1972 Summer Olympics – Munich, West Germany

1972 Winter Olympics – XI Olympic Winter Games – Sapporo, Japan

1972-XI-Olympic-Winter-Games-Sapporo-Japan
1972 Winter Olympics – Sapporo, Japan

1976 Winter Olympics – XII Olympic Winter Games – Innsbruck, Austria

1976-Innsbruck-Olympics_Winter_Posters
1976 Winter Olympics – Innsbruck, Austria

1976 Summer Olympics – Games of the XXI Olympiad – Montreal, Canada

1976-Summer-Olympic-Games-Montreal-Canada
1976 Summer Olympics – Montreal, Canada
1976-Summer-Olympic-Montreal-Canada
1976 Summer Olympics – Montreal, Canada

1980 Winter Olympics – XIII Olympic Winter Games – Lake Placid, New York, United States

1980 Winter Olympics - Lake Placid, New York, United States
1980 Winter Olympics – Lake Placid, New York, United States

1980 Summer Olympics – Games of the XXII Olympiad – Moscow, Soviet Union

1980-Moscow-olympics-poster
1980 Summer Olympics – Moscow, Soviet Union (Russia)
1980-Moscow-olympics-poster2
1980 Summer Olympics – Moscow, Soviet Union (Russia)
1980-Moscow-olympics-poster3
1980 Summer Olympics – Moscow, Soviet Union (Russia)
1980-Moscow-olympics-poster4
1980 Summer Olympics – Moscow, Soviet Union (Russia)

1984 Winter Olympics – XIV Olympic Winter Games – Sarajevo, Yugoslavia

1984 Winter Olympics – Sarajevo, Yugoslavia
1984 Winter Olympics Poster – Sarajevo, Yugoslavia
1984-sarajevo-olympics-poster-vucko
Vucko – 1984 Winter Olympics – Sarajevo, Yugoslavia
1984-sarajevo-olympics-poster2
Vucko – 1984 Winter Olympics – Sarajevo, Yugoslavia
 Vucko - 1984 Winter Olympics - Sarajevo, Yugoslavia
Vucko – 1984 Winter Olympics – Sarajevo, Yugoslavia

1984 Summer Olympics – Games of the XXIII Olympiad – Los Angeles, United States

1984-Los-Angelos-Summer-Olympic-Games
1984 Summer Olympics – Los Angeles, United States

1988 Winter Olympics – XV Olympic Winter Games – Calgary, Alberta, Canada

1988-Calgary-Olympics_Poster
1988 Winter Olympics – Calgary, Alberta, Canada

1988 Summer Olympics – Games of the XXIV Olympiad – Seoul, South Korea

1988-Summer-Olympic-Games-Seoul-South-Korea
1988 Summer Olympics – Seoul, South Korea

1992 Winter Olympics – XVI Olympic Winter Games – Albertville, France

1992 Winter Olympics - Albertville, France
1992 Winter Olympics – Albertville, France

1992 Summer Olympics – Games of the XXV Olympiad – Barcelona, Spain

1992-Summer-Olympic-Games-Barcelona-Spain
1992 Summer Olympics – Barcelona, Spain
1992-Summer-Olympic-Games-Barcelona-Spain1
1992 Summer Olympics – Barcelona, Spain

1994 Winter Olympics – XVII Olympic Winter Games – Lillehammer, Norway

1994-Lillegammer-Olympics_Posters
1994 Winter Olympics – Lillehammer, Norway
1994 Winter Olympics Poster - Lillehammer, Norway
1994 Winter Olympics Poster – Lillehammer, Norway

1996 Summer Olympics – Games of the XXVI Olympiad – Atlanta, United States

1996-Summer-Olympic–Atlanta-poster
1996 Summer Olympics – Atlanta, United States

1998 Winter Olympics – XVIII Olympic Winter Games – Nagano, Japan

1998-Nagano-Olympics_Winter_Posters
1998 Winter Olympics – Nagano, Japan
1998-nagano-xviii-olympic-winter-games
1998 Winter Olympics – Nagano, Japan

2000 Summer Olympics – Games of the XXVII Olympiad – Sydney, Australia

2000-Summer-Olympic-Games-Sydney-Australia
2000 Summer Olympics – Sydney, Australia

2002 Winter Olympics – XIX Olympic Winter Games – Salt Lake City, Utah, United States

2002 Winter Olympics - Salt Lake City, Utah, United States
2002 Winter Olympics Poster – Salt Lake City, Utah, United States
2002-SLC-Winter-Olympics-Poster
2002 Winter Olympics – Salt Lake City, Utah, United States

2004 Summer Olympics – Games of the XXVIII Olympiad – Athens, Greece

2004-Summer-Olympic-Athens-Greece2
2004 Summer Olympics – Athens, Greece
2004-Summer-Olympic-Games-Athens-Greece
2004 Summer Olympics – Athens, Greece

2006 Winter Olympics – XX Olympic Winter Games – Turino, Italy

2006-Torino_Winter_Olympics_Poster
2006 Winter Olympics – Turino, Italy
2006-Torino_Winter_Olympics_Poster2
2006 Winter Olympics – Turino, Italy
2006-Torino_Winter_Olympics_Poster3
2006 Winter Olympics – Turino, Italy
2006 Winter Olympics Poster – Turino, Italy
2006 Winter Olympics Poster – Turino, Italy

2008 Summer Olympics – Games of the XXIX Olympiad – Beijing, China

2008_Olympics_games_Beijing_China_poster
2008 Summer Olympics – Beijing, China
2008-beijing-olympics-mascots
2008 Summer Olympics – Beijing, China

2010 Winter Olympics – XXI Olympic Winter Games – Vancouver, BC, Canada

2010_vancouver-olympics-poster
2010 Winter Olympics – Vancouver, BC, Canada
2010_vancouver-olympics
2010 Winter Olympics – Vancouver, BC, Canada
2010_vancouver-olympics2
2010 Winter Olympics – Vancouver, BC, Canada

2012 Summer Olympics – Games of the XXX Olympiad – London, United Kingdom

2012-Summer-Olympic-Games-London-UK-poster
2012 Summer Olympics – London, United Kingdom

2014 Winter Olympics – XXII Olympic Winter Games – Sochi, Russia

2014-sochi-olympics-poster-2
2014 Winter Olympics – Sochi, Russia
2014-sochi-olympics-poster
2014 Winter Olympics – Sochi, Russia
2014-sochi-olympics-poster3
2014 Winter Olympics Patterns – Sochi, Russia

Huge thanks goes to Bill Pileggi, Olympic researcher who contributed to this collection by providing high quality posters from his personal collection.

Aigars

Frontend web developer and web designer specialized in free and premium WordPress theme development. After graduating with BBA he self-though frontend web development. Mainly CSS/HTML/JavaScript(React, Vue) and some PHP. Obsessed with application performance, user experience and simplicity.

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