Using the Olympic Rings To Highlight Disparity Instead of Equality

Gustavo Sousa's Olympic Rings

Gustavo Sousa, the Brazilian creative director at Mother London uses the five colorful Olympic rings to display graphs about the earth and world we inhabit together. Each of the classic rings represents one of the five continents taking part in the games.

Gustavo has developed elegant graphics by using an insightful and very simple design system. A color code denotes a particular colored ring as representative of a specific continent. By using the research data numbers as a guide to each circle’s size, the five circles quickly communicate the size of the problem or issue.

While the ring design has always shown equally sized rings to represent the idea that people on every continent are equal, Gustavo shows that current issues aren’t equal on every continent. By understanding the differences, he believes we can take action that leads to equality.

Color Code

Black = Europe

Green = Asia

Yellow = Africa

Red = North and South America

Blue = Oceania, Australia, New Zealand and islands

The project combines the names of all five continents. oceaniaeuropeamericasafricaasia is designed around 16 prints, one for each day of the Olympic Games. Topics cover everything from fast food consumption to population numbers to health issues.

Gustavo Sousa's Olympic Rings

It’s beautiful work and very effective. In this day of busy infographic charts, its simplicity makes even greater impact. By showing us just one staggering figure at a time there’s a much great chance we’ll remember it.

Gustavo Sousa's Olympic Rings

Gustavo Sousa's Olympic Rings

To see all 16 graphics watch the short video. As the Olympic Circles change size, growing or shrinking based on the changing issues the points they communicate so beautifully in print become even stronger.