Politics & Olympics: Ideals and Realities

The Olympics are an event where the world can come together to celebrate the peak of human performance in peace. Oh, wait. I may be an obsessive when it comes to the Olympic ideals, but I’m not blind. I understand that there is a stark difference at times between the dreams of the Olympic charter and the reality of the world it sits in. As much as Pierre de Coubertin wished for an Olympics without politics, as long as sportsmen are competing under their national flag, there always will be. As long as it remains the largest human event outside of war, it will always attract commercial interest as well from profit seeking companies keen to advertise to the masses. How brilliant then that there is an exhibition being displayed in the Free Word Centre titled: Politics & Olympics: Ideals and Realities (FREE). The small collection of posters and pictures lays out the juxtaposing positions of the Olympic movement, the IOC and LOCOG that highlight the contradictions that will forever be present when it comes to the Games. From posters surrounding the 1936 Nazi Olympics to a hackney teenagers pictures from outside the excluding fences on the 2012 Olympic park, the exhibition is intriguing and enlightening. If you’re a cynic, there is lots to feast upon. If you’re a super-fan, it’s a useful insight into the Olympics’ less than ideal journey through history. Well worth a visit.