Creating the Beijing Olympic Medals

As with everything else associated with the recently completed 2008 Beijing Olympic Games, the medals themselves were quite a production. Each was inlaid with jade: the bronze with the most common dark green jade, the silver with a more rare lighter green stone, and finally the gold medal which was adorned with the most precious of all – white jade. Following are a selection of photos illustrating the sequence of manufacturing these stunning awards medals. Click on each for enlarged views.

Completed Olympic medal
Completed Olympic Medals with Ribbons.
Reverse of Olympic medals
Reverse side of the Olympic medals.
Selecting the jade stone.
Selecting the jade stone.
Cutting the jade stone
Cutting the jade stone.
Cutting the jade stone
Cutting the jade stone.
Cutting the jade stone
Cutting the jade stone.
Polishing the jade stone
Polishing the jade stone.
Inspecting the finished carved jade
Inspecting the finished carved jade.
Sculpting the reverse design
Sculpting the design for the reverse side.
Stacks of blanks for the bronze medal
Stacks of blanks for the bronze medal.
Stamping the medals
Stamping the medals.
The stamped medal
Reverse side of the medal after stamping.
Checking the engraving
Putting the finishing touches on the engraving.
Affixing the jade collar
Affixing the jade collar to the front half of the medal.
Halves of each medal
The two halves of each medal before final assembly.
Obverse of medals
Obverse of the completed medals.