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Ancient art finds space in Games logo, motifs

Those with a keen eye will spot various Mughal architecture and traditional Indian folk art inspired design elements for the 2010 Commonwealth Games. The designs adorn the logos, motifs, pictograms, wood marks and various other design patterns for the Games, reports Moushumi Das Gupta. See graphics

delhi Updated: Dec 16, 2009 01:16 IST
Moushumi Das Gupta

Those with a keen eye will spot various Mughal architecture and traditional Indian folk art inspired design elements for the 2010 Commonwealth Games.

The designs adorn the logos, motifs, pictograms, wood marks and various other design patterns for the Games.

The Image and Look Team of the Commonwealth Games Organising Committee (OC), in consultation with a private design company, has taken inspiration from Delhi’s architectural heritage and colourful traditional folk art while designing various games logos and pictograms.

So while 'Jaalis'(ornamental pattern which is a common feature in Mughal architecture) have been digitised to give a modern look and is being extensively used in various games designs and patterns, the traditional folk art from Uttar Pradesh, Sanjhi, is the inspiration behind the games pictograms.

The pictograms for all the 17 sporting discipline that are part of the Commonwealth Games have been inspired by Sanjhi art.

These sports include wrestling, athletics, archery, weightlifting, cycling, boxing among others.

Sanjhi is a paper cutting and stencil art form from Uttar Pradesh used to tell stories. Sanjhi painting is rooted in the folk culture of the region and Vaishnava temples used it extensively in the 15th and 16th century.

Sangeeta Welinkar, Additional Director General, Image & Look, said, “The designs and motifs are an amalgamation of ancient Indian architecture and traditional folk art.”

“Our country has a rich history of art and culture and we decided to take inspiration from it to showcase them during the games.”

The 2010 Commonwealth Games logo has been inspired by India’s national emblem Ashoka Chakra.

“Worldwide international sporting events are associated with local art and culture. The logo of 2000 Sydney Olympics was a boomerang, which is very Australian, while the logo of 2004 Athens Olympic was a wreath,” said Welinkar.