“visual zapping”, between realism and surrealism… Discover the official posters of the Olympic and Paralympic Games

The designer Ugo Gattoni was chosen to imagine the posters for the Paris Games. If there is one for the Olympic Games and one for the Paralympics, the two posters create a side-by-side set.

France Télévisions – Sports Editorial



Reading time: 4 min

As usual, Paris 2024 breaks the codes of Olympic tradition. Far from the posters of previous editions – often centered on a logo, a face, a symbol – Paris 2024 wanted to propose its definition of the official poster of the Games. “The Paris 2024 project is unique in more than one way and it was important for me to have a sort of ‘visual zapping’, of everything that we were going to be able to see during this edition, in a sort of summary. Paris 2024 is not just about a logo”, presents Joachim Roncin, design director of Paris 2024. The posters for the Games were unveiled at the Musée d’Orsay, in Paris, on Monday March 4.

Olympic and Paralympic posters for the Paris Games "can live without each other"but "form a side-by-side unit", explains designer Ugo Gattoni.  (PARIS 2024)

Never has a Games poster been so detailed, so comprehensive, creating such a broad universe. In these, we find the competition locations (the gardens of the Château de Versailles, the Grand Palais, the Marseille Marina, the Teahupo’o wave in Tahiti, the Seine etc.) and references to all disciplines games. You can also see the Stade de France nested in the Eiffel Tower, the Parisian bridges, the Haussmannian buildings, the Trocadéro, the Arc de Triomphe, in a whimsical, colorful style accessible to all, in a form of “composition puzzle”.

“The image is a fantasy, and represents the abundant side of what these Games are going to be, with this idea of ​​celebration, and of welcoming the whole world.”

Joachim Roncin, design director of Paris 2024

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“I also like the symbolism of the Trocadéro open to the world, to this sea which overlooks the horizon”, underlines the design director of Paris 2024. The Bélem, the boat which will transport the Olympic flame from Greece to France, the Patrol of France, Stoke Mandeville, cradle of the Paralympic Games, also have their place there. Without forgetting the reference to the medals, the torch, and obviously the mascots, eight of which have been slipped more or less discreetly into the drawing, and can be found in the manner of a “Where is Charlie?”.

Two posters for a global vision

The posters, one for the Olympic Games, the other for the Paralympics, “can live one without the other, but forms a whole side by side, in order to give the overall vision of Paris 2024”, specifies Joachim Roncin. The creation wants to mix the show and the spectators, with as many identified men as women, so that one fits into the other, in order to tell stories within the overall story. “We didn’t want an emphasis on Olympics and sport, slips Joachim Roncin. We are uninhibited by this. I didn’t want a poster with a Manichean representation of the athlete.”

Discover the complete official poster for the Paris 2024 Games (for mobile, switch to landscape version)

To meet this challenge, Joachim Roncin called on the designer Ugo Gattoni, known for his work on large frescoes, in a spooky style, with very detailed features, mixing realism and surrealism. “I had a specific idea and I knew that Ugo was the only person who could achieve what I had in mind,” explains the design director of Paris 2024, who approached him for the first time in June 2023. After a week of discussions between the two men, so that Ugo Gattoni “bathed in the Paris 2024 spirit”the designer began to “scratch”. “The very first sketch, says the artist, it was a loose line, with a first round for the stadium, the diving board, an Olympic balcony… I digested the discussion with Joachim a little, and very quickly, the first idea was refined to become a city stadium.”

Despite the order and the criteria to be respected (values, vision and symbolism of the Games), Ugo Gattoni was able to express his full graphic style. “I was in the drawing myself, and I had a lot of freedom. The Stade de France linked to the Eiffel Tower, the Grand Palais open with rooftops and vegetation, or this caryatid, which comes out of water and who supports weightlifting, are all surreal and fantasized things which are completely linked to my style”, he testifies. Mythological inspirations and art deco touches in reference to the 1924 Games are also distilled onto the canvas. “I always create stories and universes in my work. I never make a simple illustration. I always animate my drawings so that we can walk inside”, explains Ugo Gattoni.

2,000 hours of work

To create these posters, Ugo Gattoni worked on this project “day and night for four months”, between September and January, or 2,000 hours of work. “I have always done large frescoes in performance where I draw for months and months. But this was the first time that it was so condensed, so advanced,” recognizes the artist, who is now making Games history. “At the start, I looked at the posters of the past 32 editions, and I realized that mine also had to work in 100 years. That’s why I put a strong architectural and academic base , so that my drawing crosses the ages”, notes Ugo Gattoni.

Presented on Monday at the Musée d’Orsay, the posters of the Paris Games will soon invade public spaces. They will be sold from 20 euros each, in three formats (30×40, 50×70 and 60×80). A black and white version will also be sold.

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