American artist and print-maker Allan D'Arcangelo (1930-1998) designed this stunning offset lithograph for the 1972 Olympic Games. He was among the group of international artists commissioned by the organizers of the Games to create artwork that would unite art and sports. The artists could choose their own themes as long as they did justice to the ideals of the Olympics.
This bold, abstract work is definitely full of motion and energy, as befits a poster promoting the Olympics. To many, it could represent two figures, running in unison with matching strides, but with one runner slightly ahead of the other. The runner in front is reaching back, and his hand is fused with the other runner's hand. They could be handing off a baton in a relay race, but perhaps that's the Olympic torch that is being handed off, and this is part of the Olympic Torch Relay when the torch is carried by runners from Olympia, Greece to the new Olympic venue. As with all abstract art, the viewer is free to decide what it represents, so you can make up your own Olympic story that fits the art.
Best known for his prints of road signs and landscapes that have a pop art and surrealist feel, D'Arcangelo's poster incorporates some of these design techniques into this abstract work. This poster, with its predominantly black figures drawn with geometric shapes on a white background, would be an interesting and arresting addition to any room with contemporary decor using a back and white color theme. If you are a fan of the Olympics and love abstract art, this poster has your name on it!