A series of indentations on the side of the medals – one for gold, two for silver and three for bronze – make them easy to distinguish by touch
The Tokyo 2020 organising committee has unveiled the official design of the Paralympic medals to mark one year before the opening ceremony of the Games.
The design is said to be centred around the motif of a traditional Japanese fan, depicting the Paralympic Games as the source of a fresh new wind refreshing the world as well as a shared experience connecting diverse hearts and minds.
The kaname, or pivot point, holds all parts of the fan together; here it represents para-athletes bringing people together regardless of nationality or ethnicity. Motifs on the leaves of the fan depict the vitality of people’s hearts and symbolise Japan’s captivating and life-giving natural environment in the form of rocks, flowers, wood, leaves, and water. These are applied with a variety of techniques, producing a textured surface that makes the medals compelling to touch.
Braille letters spell out “Tokyo 2020” on the medal face. A series of circular indentations on the side of the medals – one for gold, two for silver and three for bronze – make the medal types easy to distinguish by touch, the first time in Paralympic history that this provision has been made for athletes with a vision impairment.
As part of the Tokyo 2020 Medal Project, Tokyo 2020 Paralympic medals are being manufactured from recycled precious metals extracted from mobile phones and other small electronic devices donated by the public.
The medals were designed by Sakiko Matsumoto, who said: “I am very grateful that I could take part in these historic Games as a designer.
“I wanted to keep the athletes front and centre as I conceived this design. I hope these medals bring athletes and the people around them closer together and stirs a fresh new breeze in their hearts.”
Paralympic Games action takes place from August 25 to September 6, with athletics competition held from August 28.