Vancouver 2010 (XXI Olympic Winter Games) Emblem

van_2010_logo.jpg

© VANOC/COVAN

Ilaanaq, Canada’s current Olympic logo has generated a whirlwind of controversy, with some describing it as a culturally insensitive train-wreck and others as a consumer friendly marketing boom. The debate centres on the appropriation of the Inukshuk, a form with deep cultural resonance in the artic, but little relevance to Vancouver or British Columbia (though the designers note that Inukshuks have been adopted by people across Canada and an Inukshuk from Expo 86 has become an icon of Vancouver’s English Bay). Notably, the official Vancouver 2010 colours and graphics – designed by VANOC well after the logo’s selection – have little connection to the official logo and in contrast to past Olympics, the symbol is used sparingly in most Vancouver souvenirs.

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