I’ve just returned returned from a trip to both Munich and London, where I spent time with colleagues in both locations. Cosmic timing really, considering the London 2012 Olympics are on the horizon, and I’ve had Otl Aicher on the mind recently.
Much has been said in recent years about the shortcomings of the London 2012 graphic identity, but I hadn’t really been paying close attention to all the outrage, and had all but forgotten the design work – so I wasn’t prepared for the onslaught of Olympic schwag that greeted me at the official London 2012 shop at the St. Pancras Station in London. It’s borderline seizure inducing. Having just stepped off the train from Munich, where I spent time in Olympiapark and was exposed to Aichers work throughout the city, this London 2012 noise was especially jarring. And that mascot! Sigh. I took quite a few pictures, and had originally thought I’d post about Waldi vs Wenlock, but I decided I wouldn’t subject you to any of that madness. After all, this blog is here to celebrate beautiful things.
Scott has extensively covered Aicher’s work for Munich ’72 here before (in fact it’s where I was first exposed to it), but I thought the timing was right for us to be reminded just how amazing a coherent Olympic graphic identity and subsequent merchandising campaign can be.
Creative Review recently posted the above scans of the official Munich ’72 merchandise catalogue, and there are a few images of what look to be the official gift shops as well. While Waldi was the only souvenir that was actually designed by Aichlers studio directly, I find it really impressive how cohesive the entire output of the “Olympic Souvenir” department was. This is most likely due to the fact that Aicher dictated a very strict set of rules as to how the logotype and symbols could be used.
It’s easy to pick apart London 2012 when stacked up against the extremely high bar set by Aicher’s work for Munich, but let’s be real here, remember Izzy from Atlanta? NOTHING is as bad as that. What. Is. That. Thing.
I’m not sure if they entered the competition, but if they did I’d be real curious to see what Bibliotheque came up with for the London 2012 graphic identity. After all, they know a thing or two about Aicher’s legacy, having put together an exhibition of his Munich ’72 work over at the Vitsoe shop in 2007, comprised entirely of posters and print from their their own collection. This unofficial Olympic torch poster they did is pretty amazing as well.
Bonus link: While googling around, I found this site that offers up the official Olympic report books as PDFs. The Munich 72′ books span 3 Volumes, upwards of 1200 pages. For the true Munich ’72 geeks.
So I came across this great collection of vinatge ski posters a while back, but unfortunately they were all watermarked. I really hate watermarks and try to avoid posting images containing them at all costs; but these were just too good to pass up so you’ll have to try and see past the giant “ORIGINAL SKI POSTERS” and enjoy the underlying greatness. Growing up in Sacramento I always had a thing for 70s ski culture — Tahoe was a short drive up the mountain and a lot of the style and imagery tricked down into the valley. A lot of these perfectly capture the spirit of those times for me.
So, as you may have guessed, these are all from the Original Ski Posters site, where you can purchase many of them. Sadly, these watermarked Jpegs are as close as most of us will ever get to these as they start at around £500 and go upwards of £3000. there is an open image directory here where you can grab all the images with a utility like Downthemall. A couple seem ripe for watermark removal and some of the resolutions are high enough to get a good print out of.
Its usually hard for me to trust the youth, sometimes I fear their going to take my medicine away that i’ll need when i’m 80 and laugh while they pour Mountain Dew all over it and then i’m stuck with Mountain Dew medicine, no one wants Mountain Dew medicine except for them, they love the idea of Mountain Dew flavored medicine….but Zack I trust Zack even though i’ve never met him, I think he’s 17 and lives in Denmark and listen to this track above he’s making stuff that is just as good as Mount Kimbie I think. If you like it check out the Shigeto, Beautiful Bells, and Danaet remixes or just grab this song for FREE.
I was just on iChat with Machinedrum, he moved to Berlin a handful of hours ago so anyone in Berlin please make this talented man feel at home. He can whip up a track better and faster than Emeril making a spicy omelette(don’t google omelette, they don’t look appetizing in photos). He just signed to Planet-Mu and has an LP on the way but before you wait for that release check out this EP with this song Listen 2 Me i’ve actually stopped typing a few times while listening to it so I could dance in my seat, its sort of an African influenced dance if you needed to know with a lot of bouncing, try it.
Alright time to slow the roll with Hotflush label owner Scuba, this track brings me back to Skam days, makes me think about Bola….*drools* too good. If I knew how to make that pulse-y deep airy sound I wouldn’t do anything else kind of like when you watch the summer olympics and they do the floor routine and you imagine yourself only doing backflips all the time like out the door and to the store because you can and you want to do it forever.
Samiyam is beastly here, just rough and raw, listen to that cymbal, its taking a beating, this needs to be played by a live band.
I’ve pretty much made up my mind that — barring any major developments on the Nikon side (which I suppose are relatively likely) — my next camera will be a 5D MK2/3. But I’ve put photography aside for a while to focus on some other things so this is a ways off. It’s nice to see stuff like this in the meantime to tide me over.
After watching the Winter Olympics I found this History of Ski Aerial Acrobatics pretty amusing. The whole thing is basically just a bloopers reel of guys eating it off of jumps. Towards the end they start nailing the landings though and the super-8 style film is pure vintage goodness. Check the awesome lens flare at 3:24.
Post punk/dream pop darlings 800Beloved have just released their first single/4 track EP from their upcoming album Everything Purple which includes a shorter/popper album’s single. This upbeat track oozes dancing and falling in love at the same time, I love it so much I asked the band if I could give it away for FREE and they said yes so download it here for FREE.
If you don’t follow indie labels like I do then just understand that if your LP comes out on Domino or French Kiss then your golden, press will pick you up and you’ll definitely get a proper chance to be loved since their A+R know what their doing. Recent signings Local Natives are catchy and talented, I like how the drums are mixed, they seem to sound a bit more upfront which works really well for this track.
I found Sambassadeur a few weeks ago only after searching for some post rock Swedish bands that aren’t just The Mary Onettes and The Radio Dept. They have a Cranberries/The Sundays feel, this was the only track I picked up but after a few listens I definitely want more.
I have been really hooked to listening to music behind every commercial on TV during the Olympics and this Xx usage was one of the best i’ve heard to date, such a perfect match with AT&T I think it was.
In keeping with my recentcarkick I thought I’d post these vintage BMW ads. The first one — created as part of BMW’s affiliation with the 1972 Munich Olympics — is vaguely reminiscent of Otl Aicher’s posters. I’m assuming this was no accident. It’s also a big enough file that you could probably get a pretty good print out of it off a nice inkjet (click image to view full size). I really wish more vintage posters like this were available in higher resolutions. With most of this advertising stuff, the owners of the copyrights have no intention of ever printing them again, it’s a shame they can’t be reproduced and enjoyed by more people.
Alphanumeric has a great set of Otl Aicher work including these artifacts from the 1972 Munich Olympics. As much as I love the posters from Munich, there’s something about the official stuff (tickets, badges, etc.) that might be even more fun to look at. I love how they combine form with function and you can never go wrong with serial numbers. It’s amazing to think that people defiled that beautiful luggage tag with their names and addresses. I guess that’s what makes these all the more interesting, the fact that most were destroyed by being used for their intended purpose.