THE 80TH OLYMPIC TORCH LIGHTING CEREMONY | A LOOK BACK AT THE COSTUMES

January 12, 2016

The Olympic Torch Lighting Ceremony of Rio 2016 marks 80 years since the first flame was lit for the 1936 Berlin Olympics.

 

Glancing back over the costumes some fashion critics conclude that the costumes were never designed before in their history by a ‘designer’ in a truly professional sense of repute and calibre. The 1956 Helsinki ceremony was perhaps the most playful and as a result indicative of the times – as the costumes speak of the 1950s. They were also brightly coloured in red and The High Priestess wore a different design to The Priestesses. Since 1952 all ceremonies opted for much safer costumes, that were bland and of basic construction, and where over time the costumes became more and more identical to one another with fewer and fewer variations.

 

Even though there have been coloured costumes in past ceremonies they were always monochrome. Costumes never consisted of more than one colour. The Rio 2016 designs are the first time designs consist of 3 to 4 colours per costume. There are 2 to 3 colours per dress and another of the leather harness. The Rio 2016 designs were also the first time leather and fur were incorporated into the costumes - materials used commonly in ancient Greek dress, particularly dancers. Variations were also reincorporated in the Rio 2016 designs, where there were over 6 designs: 1 high priestess, 2 priestess, 1 male, 1 muse of peace and 3 children of peace.

 

1936 BERLIN

 

1948 LONDON

 

1952 HELSINKI

 

1952 HELSINKI

 

1956 MELBOURNE

 

1964 TOKYO

 

                       1968 MEXICO

 

Monochrome coloured costumes​

 

1988 SEOUL

 

​2004 ATHENS

 

2016 RIO

 

2016 RIO

 

2016 RIO

 

2016 RIO

 

2016 RIO


 

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