Costume comprising body, head, feet and leggings, Olympic mascot, 'Syd', Olympic Games, Sydney, 2000, mascot designed by Matthew Hatton, 1997, costume made for SOCOG, c.1997
This costume of the Olympic mascot, 'Syd', was manufactured in 1997 to promote the coming Sydney 2000 Games. Costumes for the two other Sydney 2000 mascots, 'Olly' and 'Millie', were manufactured at the same time. The correct handling and characterisation of these costumes is explained in an instructional video (Instruction video for dressing, care and characterisation of the Olympic mascot costumes, Conrad & Co. and Black Sheep Productions, 1997) that is also in the Sydney 2000 Games Collection. Along with the Olly and Millie costumes, the Syd costume is representative of the mascots and associated objects that were part of the visual theme for the 2000 Games.
In 1998, SOCOG launched its family of three mascots for the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games. These characters - an echidna, kookaburra and platypus - would "inspire, entertain, inform and embrace people in a friendly, welcoming style that would encapsulate the spirit of Sydney" (Sydney 2000 Olympic Games Image Guidelines, SOCOG Image Department, 1998). They would also serve more practical functions of promoting and adorning merchandise, and appearing on banners, signage and other decorative material for the Games. Each mascot would also be patron to several Olympic sports.
Sydney graphic designer, Matthew Hatton, developed the suite of three mascots in 1997 as part of an official competition. His intention was to create characters that would represent the earth, air and water, and would encapsulate the spirits of Sydney, the Olympic Games and the new millennium. The resulting characters, 'Syd', 'Olly' and 'Millie', became integral to the visual theme of the Sydney 2000 Games.
Syd, a platypus, was a dynamic athlete who embodied the Australian character and represented the environment. He was patron of environmental programs, including Green Games 2000, a major environmental initiative for Sydney 2000. Olly, a kookaburra, was custodian of the Olympic rings and symbolised the ethos and history of the Olympic Games. He was a representative for current affairs and general information. Millie, an echidna, was mastermind of new technologies and represented hope and optimism for the new millennium. She was an advocate of the internet and education. Together, these three figures served as highly profitable icons for Sydney 2000.
The Sydney 2000 Image Department monitored and approved the creative use of the Olympic mascots on official merchandising. Its 1998 publication, 'Sydney 2000 Olympic Games Image Guidelines', specified the correct size, colour, pose and background for each mascot, and included brief character profiles, personalised footprints and signatures.
Olympic mascot, Syd, designed by Matthew Hatton for SOCOG, 1997.
Made for SOCOG, c.1997
Used by SOCOG to promote the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games.
Made for and owned by the Olympic Coordination Authority/Sydney Organising Committee for the Olympic Games, and donated to the Powerhouse Museum after use in the Games.