Paris prepares to host 2024 summer Olympics with arts festival

Posters are displayed along the banks of the Seine, where the opening ceremony will take place

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Paris is building up to next summer’s Olympics with a display of posters along the banks of the river Seine.

As part of the Nuit Blanche arts festival and the Paris 2024 Cultural Olympiad, the city has unveiled works by seven artists focused on showing how the games will be about “inclusivity, parity, celebration and innovation”. “Games wide open” is the slogan of the 2024 Olympics.

In collaboration with the International Olympic Committee, the artists – who were selected via a competition – have created posters to complement the official games poster, which has yet to be revealed.

The artists chosen include Adam Janes, an American painter. Born in Texas, Janes often works with collage, pencil and watercolour, creating complex figurative and abstract imagery. His work is part of the permanent collection at the Los Angeles County Museum Of Art and the Museum Of Contemporary Art.

Also from America is Clotilde Jimenez, a multidisciplinary artist. Originally from Hawaii, Jimenez lives and works in Mexico City, and uses wallpaper, clothing, magazine clippings and Mexican craftpaper to create collages.

Gilles Elie, a French painter best known for his paintings of empty studios, uses lines to create a poster that channels kinetic energy, while French photographers Elsa and Johanna create images made using a built set, in which the artists dress up as fictional characters.

A Special Sunday starring artistic creators Elsa and Johanna, as part of the arts festival taking place ahead of the Olympic Games. Photo: Paris 2024 Organising Committee

Other French artists include: Pierre Seinturier, a cartoonist, who creates darkly brooding imagery; Fanny Michaelis, a designer and illustrator who works for Le Monde, as well as being the singer and drummer in the band Fatherkid, which she cofounded in 2012; and Stephanie Lacombe, a photographer whose work revolves around documenting ordinary life. She received the Agfa Special Prize in 2001, from Brazilian social commentary photographer Sebastiao Salgado.

As part of the 2024 Olympics celebrations, which have begun around the Seine where the opening ceremony will take place, more than 200 artworks and eclectic performances will feature across Paris. These range from the opera and whirling dervishes, to large-scale sculptures, a Wild West ping pong tournament and a drone show to mimic the night sky.

Joining the Nuit Blanche arts festival – which has been bringing art and music to the banks of the river since 2002 – the posters by seven artists will be displayed along the Seine for one month. Each artist was invited to create two posters, one for the Olympics and one for the Paralympic Games, and these are being shown together as a series of diptychs.

Organised by the Cultural Olympiad, a body that is looking to explore the relationship between art and athletics, the posters are described as being “at the heart of Paris 2024's ambition to leave behind a true artistic and cultural legacy”.

The timing of the 2024 Olympics is significant for France as it marks exactly a century since it hosted the games in 1924. After being displayed along the river for a month, the posters will go on tour across France.

Updated: June 05, 2023, 6:33 AM