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On show in Canberra until 30 September 2024 | Free

Riding the Olympic Wave: Breakthrough Sports showcases the six new Olympic sports and disciplines of 3x3 basketball, BMX freestyle, breaking, skateboarding, sport climbing and surfing.

The dramatic arrival of these events, first at Tokyo 2020 and now at Paris 2024, where breaking will debut, represents the biggest transformation of the Olympic sports program in recent times.

The featured sports all evolved out of youth culture and have developed their own unique environments of art, fashion, film and design. The exhibition includes a series of artistic installations and programming that highlight the close ties between contemporary art, culture and sport.

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Highlighting Australia’s deep connection with the Games, this exhibition explores the new wave of sports and the athletes, including many Aussies, who are excelling at them. Jump in and enjoy the ride.

Youth-focused disciplines

Sometimes described as urban sports or even extreme sports, these youth-focused disciplines spontaneously broke away from traditional sports practices and spread internationally in the 1960s and 1970s.

The common denominator between these sports is a grassroots evolution that took place as a result of young people developing their own modes of play, creativity and competition within their communities. Their philosophy and lifestyle are often starkly different from other sports.


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Riding the Olympic Wave: Breakthrough Sports was developed in partnership by the National Museum of Australia and the Olympic Museum, Lausanne, Switzerland.

The exhibition is supported by the Australian Olympic Committee.

Riding the Olympic Wave is on show in the Gandel Atrium from 31 May to 30 September 2024.

© 2024 – International Olympic Committee (IOC) – All Rights Reserved. Olympic™, Olympics™, Olympic Games™ and other Olympic Properties are registered trademarks owned by the IOC.

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