Kenjiro Sano, who unveiled his brand design and style for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics last month, has denied allegations that he copied the design from an emblem for a Belgian theatre.

The Japanese designer advised journalists there is “totally no reality” in claims that he plagiarised the brand whilst speaking at a press conference in Tokyo yesterday.

“I get a great deal of time with each design and style, nurturing them like children,” claimed Sano. “So for this variety of talk to emerge is really unfortunate and sort of unhappy.”

Belgian designer Olivier Debie, who developed the brand for the Théâtre de Liège in 2013, accused Sano of copying his symbol after the Olympics layout was exposed in July 2015.

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“I am extremely surprised to hear the remarks of the Belgian designer,” mentioned Sano. “I would like to take this possibility to state that his claims are completely groundless.”

“I was shocked and discovered it challenging to accept, to be trustworthy,” he additional. “But I have never been to Belgium, nor observed the logo even as soon as.”

Debie posted an image on his Facebook page presenting the logos side by side and tweeted an animation he produced to demonstrate the similarities between the two designs.

Both logos function a daring T form, circles and graphic serifs. In accordance to the games’ organisers, Sano’s layout is primarily based on the T in Tokyo, tomorrow and staff, even though Debie’s combines the letters T and L that stand for Théâtre and Liège.

Even though his emblem is not a registered trademark, Debie has reportedly asked the International Olympic Committee and Tokyo games organisers to adjust the emblem, and threatened legal action if it is not withdrawn.

“Their logo was not a registered trademark, so there is absolutely no dilemma,” stated Tokyo 2020 marketing director Hidetoshi Maki.

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“In creating the emblems, Tokyo 2020 went by means of a regular verification process and chose the logo after a extended, extensive and transparent process,” additional a statement from the video games organisers.

“Prior to the announcement of the emblem, the IOC and Tokyo 2020 carried out comprehensive investigation on trademark protections internationally. We did not determine any specific issues by way of the thorough method and then became confident about releasing the emblem.”

This isn’t the initial controversy to hit the Tokyo 2020 Olympics – last month Zaha Hadid’s design for the stadium set to host a lot of of its events was scrapped by the Japanese prime minister.

Copying claims also hit the last Olympic Video games in London, when Thomas Heatherwick was accused of employing Atopia’s layout for his petal-like cauldron.



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