Olympic Games 1932 Los Angeles

10th Olympiad


Sports: 18

Events: 131

National Teams: 37

Participants: 1,921

Olympic Art Competition

  A r t C o m p e t i t i o n s  a n d  E x h i b i t i o n

During the era of the modern Olympiads it has been natural for the Sports phases of the Games to become emphasized in the public mind. However, in the revival of the modern Games the founders of the new movement instituted competitions in the Arts alongside of the Sports, just as they were associated in the ancient Grecian festivals. It has been more difficult to forward the Art competitions, but the Olympic organizations have not failed to recognize their responsibility and to give full weight to the value of preserving and encouraging the cultural side of the Games. With this responsibility in mind, the Organizing Committee gave early attention to the organization of the Art Competitions, this item being the first definitely provided for in the budget, almost three years before the celebration of the Games. The next step was the appointment of General Charles H. Sherrill, member of the International Olympic Committee for the United States and a recognized leader in the advancement of the Olympic Arts, as chairman of the special committee to undertake the organization of this important activity of the Games of the Xth Olympiad. In formulating plans, it was decided to follow the example of previous Olympiads and include an Exhibition of Art in connection with the prescribed Art Competitions.

The American Federation of Arts in Washington was consulted by General Sherrill, and Mr. Homer Saint-Gaudens, Director of the Art Department of the Carnegie Institute, Pittsburgh, was requested to make an estimate of the probable cost of the Art Competitions and Exhibition. Mr. Saint-Gaudens had for a number of years assembled international exhibitions of paintings at the Carnegie Institute, and was therefore especially competent to make such an estimate. The amount he named was approved by the Organizing Committee and was placed in the hands of the American Federation of Arts, this national organization having consented to assume the responsibility.

The work of assembling the American exhibits was assigned to Miss Leila Mechlin, Secretary of the American Federation of Arts, and the organizing of the European exhibits was entrusted to Mr. Guillaume Lerolle, the foreign representative of the Carnegie Institute. The Olympic Committees of the various European nations in every instance assumed the responsibility of assembling their own exhibits, but a certain allowance was made to each for the cost of transportation, insurance, and other expenses, and arrangements for forwarding and returning the exhibits were made by or through Mr. Lerolle.

According to the original agreement, the American Federation of Arts was to be responsible solely for the American Section and for the general supervision of the Exhibit, but owing to the ppointment of General Sherrill as Ambassador to Turkey early in 1932, and his immediate departure for his post, the entire management of the Competitions and Exhibition was delegated to Miss Mechlin, representing the American Federation of Arts.

For the most part the foreign countries forwarded their exhibits by steamship via the Panama Canal direct to Los Angeles. Through special arrangement with the United States Customs Bureau, all exhibits were entered either free of duty or in bond, and unpacked and repacked under customs supervision in the Los Angeles Museum, where the exhibits were shown. In accordance with a general ruling covering transportation, all exhibits shown in an International Exhibition are sent by prepaid freight and returned by the carriers freight free. The foreign committees insured their respective exhibits in transit, but all exhibits were insured by the American Federation of Arts for the
Organizing Committee from the time of arrival in Los Angeles until re-delivery, in the case of foreign exhibits, to the shippers for return, and in the case of the American exhibits, to the artists, owners, or lenders. The total amount of insurance placed was approximately $400,000.00.

The first European exhibits arrived in Los Angeles on May 15, 1932, and the last to be received arrived shortly after July 1. The exhibition opened simultaneously with the Games, on July 30, but continued until the end of August. The last exhibits were returned from Los Angeles October 1. The Exhibition was held in the Los Angeles Museum of History, Science and Art, which stands in Exposition Park (Olympic Park), opposite and at no great distance from Olympic Stadium. It occupied the foyer of the Museum, the main rotunda and adjacent halls, the small rotunda, and fifteen galleries. There were in all over 1100 exhibits, by artists of 31 nations. The countries represented were :

Argentine, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Czechoslovakia, Denmark, France, Germany, Great Britain, Guatemala, Holland, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Luxembourg, Mexico, Norway, Peru, Poland, Roumania, Salvador, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Uruguay, Venezuela, and the United States.

Source document: Official Report 1932, page 749 ff


The prizes were awarded as follows:


Architectural Designs:

1932 1st Gustave Saacke and FRA Circus for Bullfights
Pierre Montenot and
Pierre Bailly 
2nd  John Russel Pope  USA Design for the Payne Whitney
3rd Richard Konwiarz GER Plan of Silesian race course

Circus for Bullfights, Gustave Saacke, Pierre Montenot and Pierre Bailly

Circus for Bullfights, Gustave Saacke, Pierre Montenot and Pierre Bailly

Designs for Town Planning:

1932 1st John Hughes  GBR Design for a sports and recreation centre with stadium for the city of Liverpool
2nd Jens Hovmoller Klemmensen DEN Design for a stadium and public park
3rd André Verbeke BEL Design for a Marathon Park



1932 1st Józef Klukowski  POL Sport Sculpture II
2nd Frederick William Mac Monnies USA Lindbergh Medal
3rd Robert Tait McKenzie CAN Shield of the Athletes

Sport Sculpture, Jozef Klukowski

Sport Sculpture, Jozef Klukowski


1932 1st Mahonri Mackintosh Young  USA Knockout
2nd Miltiades Manno HUN Wrestling
3rd Jakub Obrovsky TCH Odyseus

Knockout, Mahonri Mackintosh Young

Knockout, Mahonri Mackintosh Young

Drawings and Water-Colors:

1932 1st Lee Blair USA Rodeo
2nd Percy Crosby USA Jackknife
3rd Gerhardus Westermann NED Horseman

<Rodeo, Lee Blair

Rodeo, Lee Blair

Other Graphics Arts:

1932 1st Joseph Webster Golinkin USA Leg Scissors
2nd Janina Konarska POL Stadium
3rd Joachim Karsch GER Baton passing


1932 1st David Wallin  SWE At the Seaside of Arld
2nd Ruth Miller USA Struggle
3rd no prize was awarded

At the Seaside of Arld, David Wallin

At the Seaside of Arld,  David Wallin

Literature - All Kinds:

1932 1st Paul Bauer GER The Struggle with the Himalaya
2nd Joseph Petersen DEN The Argonauts
3rd no prize was awarded

Music - All Kinds:

1932 1st no prize was awarded
2nd Josef Suk TCH March "Into a New Life"
3rd no prize was awarded

Merit for Alpinism:

1932 1st Toni Schmid and GER First Ascension of the
Franz Schmid  Matterhorn North Side

Other Olympic art competition: