Tokyo 2020: The Art Olympics

Screen Shot 2016-08-22 at 2.53.18 pmHopefully this new logo will be implemented in 2020

The 2016 Rio Olympic Games have come and gone with the Americans reigning supreme yet again. This has been the norm for far too long, and in order to change the status quo, drastic changes need to be implemented. The answers lie in resurrecting the art competitions that were part of the Summer Olympic Games until 1948.

The Olympic Games founder, Baron Pierre de Coubertin, intended the games to include both physical and artistic competitions to highlight the importance of possessing well-rounded attributes. The artistic categories were architecture, literature, music, painting and sculpture. Benefits from including these categories would be an increase in funding in the arts sector worldwide. Here are some ideas on what kind of art competitions the next games can include. 

UntitledExact representation of what the London Olympic Stadium would have looked like if town planning was a recognised sport in 2012


For reasons unknown, town planning was scrapped as an architecture sub-category in the early days of the Olympic Games. The exciting contest of town planning will be resurrected in time for Tokyo 2020 where countries will be judged on how many street roundabouts they can include in the athletics stadium (#canberrastyle).

drama olympicsIOC’s scandal free Jacques Rogge and John Coates


The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has unfairly been the victim of proven and founded claims of corruption and nepotism. Countries competing in Tokyo will have to device a 20,000 word play on the long and celebrated history of the IOC; mentions of “unscrupulous”, “corrupt”, “bias”, and “amoral” will lead to automatic disqualification.

rap battle collage

Bjork and Celine Dion head to head in 2020


What could be more culturally appropriate at the Tokyo Olympics then a rap battle between some of the world’s whitest nations? Countries will send their most beloved singers (Iceland’s Bjork, Canada’s Celine Dion, Australia’s John Farnham, etc.) to engage in rap wordsmithery with rules drawn out by primary judge, MC Hammer.

swing phelpsMichael Phelps testing his adrenaline levels for trampolining


This category requires contestants create artworks depicting legendary Olympians in different sporting competitions and in the rococo style (just ‘coz). Examples include painting Michael Phelps in trampoline, Usain Bolt in diving and Nadia Comaneci in boxing.

marbleCute or terrifying?


Sculptors are to create works from marble of previous Olympic mascots, such as London’s Wenlock and Mandeville and Beijing’s Fuwa. If the works aren’t deemed frightening to children, then bonus points will be awarded.

See you in Tokyo!

Masya Zabidi

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s