Doping scandals, government corruption, infrastructure woes — it’s Olympics season once again! Yes, the Games of the XXXI Olympiad are set to begin next week in Rio de Janeiro, and despite the grumblings that surround it every four years, the Olympics remain the zenith of achievement for thousands of dedicated athletes across the globe. And one ADC Member intends to highlight a significant number of those stars.
Melbourne-based designer Wendy Fox is preparing to illustrate every single female gold medalist at the Rio 2016 Games, a challenge she undertook four years ago for the London 2012 Games. “While watching the London Olympics, I was awestruck by the athleticism of the female athletes, as well as their physical diversity'” she explains. “Given how little media coverage there is of female athletes, I thought it would be interesting to create a visual infographic depicting each athlete’s sport, country, physical attributes and their accomplishments.”
The London project resulted in two posters, an interactive website and a short animated video. For the Rio Games, Wendy is taking it one step further, adding a book to these other elements. She has just launched a Kickstarter campaign to make that book a reality.
“Women participate in 40% of all sport however media coverage for female athletes is at 4-7%,” says Wendy. “Astoundingly, the top hit on internet searches for ‘female athletes’ result in lists of the ‘hottest’ and ‘sexiest’ women in sport. Women, despite their gold medal athleticism are still objectified, sexualised and defined by how attractive they are, not by their athletic prowess. By presenting the data in a picturesque yet statistical way, I hope to inspire girls and women to see sporting opportunities where they may not have seen them previously and to increase interest in women’s sport.”
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