With the 2010 Olympic Games starting in 3 more days theres a lot of stuff thats going to be happening here in Vancouver. Among debate is what is going to happen with the symbolic Olympic Cauldron. I don’t beleive it has been announced what Vanoc decided to do but there are some rumours that it will be inside the airlocked BC Place. I found an article while doing a search on it, I’ve included a clip of it. I believe it was actually created by an SFU student by the name of Ian Meredith in 2006.
Exactly 12 years after Kikutake’s design was lit in Japan, billions of viewers across the globe will be watching Vancouver’s own Olympic cauldron lit in that breathtaking climactic moment that signifies the coming of another Olympiad. But how will Vancouver choose to design this iconic figure of the games? Will there be a ten metre inuksuk with a flaming head erected on top of BC place? Will there be a huge flame sprouting from the top of Science World? The 2010 ILANAAQ logo received mixed reviews, and the question facing the cauldrons designers will be intricate, and controversial. How do we build something that will, in true Canadian fashion, make everyone happy in a diverse multicultural society? Like the logo, we may see a stylistic, modern, but unassuming design.
The Vancouver Olympic Committee has established a list of standards and values that they intend to maintain throughout their plan to make 2010 the ‘greenest’ games ever. In terms of cauldron design, the major question facing the Olympic committee is how Vancouver will uphold their commitment to energy efficiency and pollution prevention while designing their Olympic cauldron. Premier Gordon Campbell has expressed his wish to fuel the flame with BC’s own off-shore oil. However, the 2010 organizers must ask themselves if burning a non-renewable resource simply to appease the aesthetics and traditions of the games, and the provincial government’s political agenda, is acceptable. Humanity is entering a new age where greater political value is placed on sustainable, ‘green’ initiatives; and with these changing values may come a new era of Olympic cauldron design.
The Olympics are a difficult balance of embracing change, and honouring tradition. Games organizers will need to rethink what is perhaps the most sacred symbolic aspect of the games; the Olympic flame. Fueling the Vancouver Cauldron with fossil fuels is not an accurate reflection of the Vancouver Olympic Committee’s, or many Canadian’s values. Here lies an opportunity to flaunt the capabilities of Canadian ingenuity. Perhaps the flame could be fuelled with methane gas; either from the Vancouver land fill or from cows farmed on British Columbia’s acclaimed agricultural land reserve. Perhaps chicken manure, or trees devastated by the pine beetle should feed BC’s first Olympic flame? Wind or solar power could also be harnessed. This could be the perfect opportunity to show the fuel-cell technologies that Vancouver’s Ballard Industries has developed. These ideas may seem far-fetched, but the point needs to be made through design. Canada must take the initiative and lead the world into a new age of imaginative, innovative, and intelligent design, and the best way to reflect our growing commitment to sustainability is through Vancouver’s Olympic cauldron.
Below are pictures of the last couple Olympic Cauldrons
2008 Beijeng Summer Olympics Cauldron
2004 Athens Summer Olympics Cauldron
2002 Salt Lake City Winter Olympics Cauldron
2000 Sydney Summer Olympics Cauldron
1996 Atlanta Symmer Olympics Cauldron
1994 Barcelona Winter Olympics Cauldron