JULY 15 - A FORMER top British javelin thrower, Roald Bradstock (pictured), is hoping to bind sport and art together in an ambitious project for London 2012.


The 46-year-old London-born athlete competed for Britain in the 1984 - when he was a team-mate of 2012 chairman Sebastian Coe - and 1988 Olympics but now lives in Atlanta having taken out United States citizenship.


He still competes as one of the top veterans in the world and recently competed in the US Olympic trials in Eugene where he earned plenty of publicity for his colourful outfits.


But the self-styled "Picasso of the Olympics" retains close links to the country of his birth and has already spoken to London 2012 officials about his plans.


Bradstock said: “The principle is to promote athletes through imagery, which transcends language and cultures.


“It is branding 2012 through imagery.


"I remember watching the art exhibition at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics called 'The Five Rings' and I felt very disconnected.


"The various paintings and sculptures did not make any sense to me and I’m an artist.

“What I want to do is include people in the build up to 2012 and get them directly involved.”

Bradstock who became a world-class thrower despite being diagnosed with Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus when he was a child and his parents were told that he would never be an athlete and that he should avoid playing sports at all costs.

Images have always played an important role in his life.


The photographs and drawings document his journey and his artistic progression from his first notebook drawings and self-created Play-Doh soldiers in 1968 at age six to his school drawings and to his present day creations. 

Bradstock describes his style of sports art as "athletic abstraction".


He creates a sporting image and overlays multiple lines and shapes which symbolise the repetition of exercises and movements that athletes practice to perfect their sport.


The resulting image, he claimed, is designed to create a visual feeling of an athlete training and competition experience.


Examples of his work can be seen at http://www.roaldbradstock.com/.