New 2020 Olympic Emblem Criticized For Being 'Dull'

The 2020 Summer Olympics, which is set to take place in Tokyo, released a new logo, as the first one had issues related to plagiarism.

According to reports, the event's organizers revealed a new logo, and people are hoping that this time around, the design is original. The new design is called the Harmonized Checkered Emblem, and is made up of three different indigo quadrilaterals. The geometries of the new emblem are said to represent the "different countries, cultures, and ways of thinking" of the people joining the much-awaited event. The color choice is also said to be traditionally Japanese, and that it expresses refined elegance and sophistication.

Below the new design, the words "Tokyo 2020" can be seen, and under them are the five interlocking Olympic rings. Ryohei Miyata, the head of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics emblem committee, and the retired Japanese baseball legend, Sadaharu Oh, were the ones who unveiled the winning design at a Tokyo conference.

The initial logo for the games was designed by art director Kenjiro Sano, one of the top graphic artists in Japan. Initially, the first logo had a lot of symbols in it. A statement about the first logo reads: "The black color of the central column represents diversity, the combination of all colors. The shape of the circle represents an inclusive world in which everyone accepts each other. The red of the circle represents the power of every beating heart."

However, many people from the Twitterverse alleged that the first Olympic logo is similar to the logo of Théâtre de Liège in Belgium. Many claim that the original logo is plagiarized, or "pakuri," which is a Japanese word that means "imitated work." The Théâtre de Liège logo was made back in 2013.

The original design was dismissed in September, 2015. This was after Belgian designer Olivier Debie accused Kenjiro Sano of copying his idea. Olivier Debie then took legal action to block the use of the design by Kenjiro Sano for the 2020 Olympics. The German designer even took to Facebook and post side-by-side images of the two logos to draw attention as to how they are very similar to each other.

A search for the new logo was then opened to the public through a design competition. Accordingly, the organizers of the game received 14,599 entries. The Harmonized Checkered Emblem, which was made by Asao Tokolo, was chosen as the winner. The new designer shared that his mind went blank when he found out that his design had won. He added, "I put a lot of time and effort into this design as though it was my own child."

Asao Tokolo is also a Japanese designer and is best known for his intricate and mathematical designs. The Emblems Selection Committee included 19 members from the sports, design, and business communities. After the design was unveiled, it has drawn criticism for looking "dull." Another person who criticized the design said "They picked the least colorful one. It's safe but too somber."

The design for the Paralympic Games was also revealed. It has a slight variation from the design for the 2020 Olympics, and it was also created by the same artist. Below the design are the words "Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games."

The logo controversy came shortly after Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe stopped the plans for building a $2 billion Olympic stadium. The public expressed their anger, saying that it was too costly. The stadium was designed by the late architect Zaha Hadid. A new design was selected by the Japanese Sports Council from Kengo Kuma in December, 2015, and construction is set to be completed by November, 2019.

[Photo by AP Images]