Friday March 01, 2024

Paris 2024 medals to contain 'piece of Eiffel Tower'

Published : 09 Feb 2024, 02:19

  DF News Desk
Paris 2024 Paralympic medals are seen during the revealing ceremony at the Paris Olympic organizers in Saint-Denis, near Paris, France, Feb. 8, 2024. Photo: Xinhua.

The medals to be awarded at this year's Paris Olympics and Paralympics will feature a hexagon-shaped piece of iron taken from the Eiffel Tower in their center, organizers said as they unveiled their design on Thursday, reported Xinhua.

The decision came from a desire to make these objects unique and singular, as Tony Estanguet, President of the Paris 2024 Organizing Committee, explained.

"The Paris 2024 medals have been designed like real pieces of jewellery: on both sides, they will show the most beautiful face of France. With their piece of the Eiffel Tower, they will be unique, creating a genuine link between the medal-winning athletes and our country," Estanguet said.

To create their design, Paris 2024 called on its Athletes' Commission and the expertise of Chaumet to work together, as the organizers wanted to ensure that the object dreamt up by the athletes was truly made for them by imagining it with them.

On the medal, the 18-gram original iron of the Eiffel Tower is cut into a hexagon. Having been stripped of its "Eiffel Tower brown" paint, the puddled iron has been restored to its original color.

Placed in the center and embossed with the emblem of the 2024 Paris Olympic Games, this piece of heritage blends elegantly with the gold, silver and bronze to give the medals a two-tone side.

"They were cut from girders and other bits that were swapped out of the Eiffel Tower during renovations and stored for safekeeping," said Joachim Roncin, head of design at Paris 2024.

The Olympic medal tells the story of the revival of the Games in Greece. A traditional figure on the medals since 2004, goddess of victory, Nike, is depicted in the foreground, emerging from the Panathenaic Stadium, where the Olympic Games was revived in 1896. The Acropolis and the Eiffel Tower are also depicted on the two sides of the goddess.

For the Paralympic medal, a graphic representation of a low-angle view under the Eiffel Tower will enable the medalists to discover the iconic building from a little-represented angle. The words "Paris" and "2024" frame the pillars of the Tower and are written in universal Braille.

To distinguish the three metals by touch, lines are engraved on the edge of the medal won: I for gold, II for silver and III for bronze.

The Paris Olympics will take place between July 26 and August 11, followed by the Paris Paralympics from August 28 to September 8.