Art&Culture

Where’s Waldi?

No other creature has captured quite as many hearts and designers sensibilities as the 1972 Summer Olympic mascot.

READ MORE
CLOSE

Where’s Waldi?

When someone mentions the phrase ‘Olympic Mascot’ it is easy to conjure an image of a strangely Japanese inspired collection of alien looking beings that have been moulded to tick off as many olympic brand values as possible.

If we look back a little further to the era when mascots resembled actual animals, almost every courageous beast has been utilised from lions to eagles to bears, however none of these creatures has captured quite as many hearts and designers sensibilities as the 1972 Summer Olympic mascot Waldi.

Created by German design legend Otl Aicher, Waldi stood, some what ironically, for the olympic values of resistance, tenacity and agility. He also carried a political agenda by incorporating all the olympic colours except red and black in an anti Nazi statement devised by Aicher who strongly opposed the movement and refused to join the Hitler Youth.

The resulting muted colour palette somehow gives Waldi’s clean lines a purer and more stylish feel than his more recent generic counterparts, who I’m sure would struggle to convey more than a message of motion, life and triumph, or whatever the current olympic core values may be.

The considered and precise lines of the petite canine’s form are typical of Aicher’s clean modernist design and were used for the route of the marathon through the city of Munich. The various parts of the hound were represented by different areas of the city with the mouth being in the Nymphenburg Park, the belly — the main downtown street and in true German style, the rear end in the English Garden.

With his proud stance and dapper striped attire it’s hard not to love this little guy, which is possibly why over two million Waldi related products were sold during and even years after the games he represented.


All artwork created by Otl Aicher
To find out more about Otl Aicher’s work visit this website
You can find some of the original artwork on sale here


Images resourced through Flickr

Tags , , , , , ,

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

CLOSE
People
F&S_WesLang_Spider_01_Feature

Agent Provocateur

Artist Wes Lang (and Spider) on the Grateful Dead, Kanye West, and Chihuahuas.

READ MORE
Art&Culture
Four&Sons_Showdogs_Feature

Under the cover of darkness

Death and wilderness play a key role in Lorna Evan’s haunting photography.

READ MORE
FourAndSons_SpikeVisser_Feature

Best of breeds

Sipke Visser’s new book lifts the lid on the fascinating world of dog shows.

READ MORE
Recommended
Recommended
Recommended
People
F&S_CarrieBrownstein_Toby_Cricket_06_Fetaure

About a girl

Carrie Brownstein (and Toby and Cricket) on dog park clichés and dog owner dynamics.

READ MORE
People
F&S_Thakoon_Stevie_05_Feature

Bohemian Rhapsody

Designer Thakoon Panichgul (and Stevie) on exotic prints and spoilt pups.

READ MORE
People
F&S_Romance_Monaro_Feature

Love Parade

Romance was Born designers Anna Plunkett and Luke Sales (and Monaro) on shiny objects, spiritual trips, and puppy love.

READ MORE
People
F&S_NachoAlegre_Lola_05_Feature

Space Invader

Apartamento creative director Nacho Alegre (and Lola) on wandering through people’s heads and homes.

READ MORE
People
F&S_PiaArrobio_Nina_Bruno_Feature_02

Free Style

Reformation style director Pia Arrobio (and Nina and Bruno) on pit bulls, tattoos, ’70s style, and ’80s icons.

READ MORE
Community
Four&Sons_DeathRow_Feature_03

Dead Dog Walking

Georgie Mason’s photographic series brings awareness to dogs on death row—and the man who gave them new life.

READ MORE