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7 bizarre ‘sports’ no longer held at the Olympic Games

Art contests

Tait McKenzie’s ‘Joy of Effort’ medallion is shown. (Mississippi Valley Conservation Authority)

That’s right – art used to be an Olympic pursuit. The IOC used to hand out gold, silver and bronze medals for sports-inspired artwork in the fields of music, painting, sculpture, graphic art, literature and architecture. There were even medals awarded for “designs for town planning” and “merit for mountaineering”. Canadian composer John Weinzweig won a silver medal in 1948 in the “music: composition for one instrument” category, and Canadian Robert Tait McKenzie won a bronze medal in the “sculpture: medals” category in 1932. Weinzweig won for his piece “Divertimenti for Solo Flute Strings,” while McKenzie won for designing a medallion called “Joy of Effort” for the American Olympic Committee.

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