The flying kangaroo
Hugh Edwards' 1978 logo for the XII Commonwealth Games, Brisbane.
In 1982 the Commonwealth Games landed in Australia. This ran from from 30 September to 9 October in and around the city of Brisbane. Forty-six nations competed and a new record set, with a total of 1,583 athletes and 571 officials taking part. Australia finished at the top of the medal table, ahead of England, Canada, Scotland and New Zealand.
At the opening ceremony–which took place in the QE II Jubilee Sports Centre, in the Brisbane suburb of Nathan–it was Mathilda, a giant mechanical kangaroo, that stole the show. Mathilda, the mascot of the Games, was designed by Hugh Edwards and was built as an impressive representation of the emblem of Australia. The logo however, which was also designed by Edwards, took a more abstract approach.
While the games took place in 1982, the logo was designed four years prior in 1978. This was the outcome of a nationwide competition. The winning logo was submitted by Hugh Edwards, a little known designer at the time. His design playfully drew its inspiration from a ‘bounding’ or ‘flying’ kangaroo, the official and internationally recognised emblem of Australia.