London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic medals on show at The Hunterian

Issued: Tue, 03 Jul 2012 10:05:00 BST

Visitors to The Hunterian this July will have the unique opportunity to see London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic gold medals before the Games begin.

The University of Glasgow’s Hunterian Museum will be the only venue in Scotland to display the medals which will be on show from 10 until 22 July. Admission is free.

Olympic medalsThe loan coincides with a new exhibition dedicated to medals in The Hunterian’s Kelvin Gallery. ‘Modern Medals’ opens on 15 July and features almost 1,000 modern art medals from all over the world, showcasing the amazing diversity of this type of miniature sculpture, now recognised as an art form in its own right.

The Olympic and Paralympic gold medals complement the show perfectly and offer a rare treat for both medal enthusiasts and sport fans.

The Olympic gold medal was designed by British artist David Watkins, an established artist in the field of decorative art. The Paralympic gold medal was designed by Lin Cheung, a practising Jewellery artist and senior lecturer in Jewellery Design at Central Saint Martins College of Arts and Design, London.

The front of the Olympic medal depicts Nike, the Greek Goddess of Victory, stepping out of the Parthenon and arriving in the host city. The reverse is a modern design symbolising the city of London and competition.

The Paralympic medal features a close-up section of an outstretched wing of Nike, the Greek Goddess of Victory, representing ‘Spirit in motion’ - forward flight, power and lightness - a natural metaphor for the spirit of the Paralympic Games. The reverse represents ‘The heart of victory’ - a depiction of the area close to the heart of the Goddess, symbolically chosen to reflect inclusion and togetherness at an historical event.

Gold, silver and bronze medals will be awarded at approximately 800 Victory Ceremonies across the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

The two gold medals have been loaned to The Hunterian by The London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

  • Olympic Gold

10 - 22 July 2012
Hunterian Museum
Admission free

  • Modern Medals

15 July - 19 August 2012

Hunterian Museum (Kelvin Gallery)

Admission free


Hunterian Museum

University of Glasgow

Gilbert Scott building

Glasgow G12 8QQ

Open Tuesday - Saturday 10.00am - 5.00pm and Sunday 11.00am - 4.00pm

Admission free 

For further information on the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Medals, please contact the London 2012 Press Office on +44 (0)203 2012 100 or visit the website at Find out the latest from London 2012 HQ on their blog: or follow them on Twitter

For further information about the Modern Medals exhibition at the Hunterian Museum, contact Harriet Gaston or visit:


Images of the London 2012 Olympic medals are available to download from:

Images of the London 2012 Paralympic medals 2011 are available to download from:


Notes to editors:

London 2012 Medals facts

  • The Olympic medals are designed especially for each individual Olympic Games by the host city's organizing committee.
  • It was not until the 1904 Olympics in St. Louis that the Games introduced the gold medal as the prize for first place
  • The London 2012 Olympic medals will weigh 375-400g, be 85mm in diameter and 7mm thick
  • The gold medal is made up of 92.5% silver,  1.34% Gold  with the remainder copper (a minimum of 6g of gold)
  • The silver medal is made up of 92.5% silver with the remainder copper
  • The bronze medal is made up of 97.0% Copper, 2.5% Zinc and 0.5% Tin
  • The Paralympic medals are designed by the host city's organising committee
  • The gold medal is made up of 92.5% silver, 1.34% Gold  with the remainder copper (a minimum of 6g of gold)
  • The silver medal is made up of 92.5% silver with the remainder copper
  • The bronze medal is made up of 97.0% Copper, 2.5% Zinc and 0.5% Tin

More information on David Watkins

  • Born 1940, Wolverhampton, UK
  • 2010, Royal Designer for Industry (RDI)
  • 1984-2006, Professor at the Royal College of Art
  • 1965-68, Special Effects Modelmaker (incl. 2001 - A Space Odyssey)
  • Work in international public collections, including:
  • Victoria & Albert Museum, London
  • Metropolitan Museum, New York
  • National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo
  • Museum of Fine Art, Houston
  • Musée des Arts Décoratifs, Paris
  • National Gallery of Australia, Canberra

More information on Lin Cheung, Jewellery artist

  • Born 1971, Hampshire, UK
  • After graduating in 1997 from the Royal College of Art with an MA in Goldsmithing, Silversmithing, Metalwork and Jewellery, Lin exhibits her work nationally and internationally, gaining acclaim for her conceptual approach to designing and making.
  • She lives and works in London and is a Senior Lecturer for Jewellery Design at Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design and is a visiting lecturer for a number of other institutions including Middlesex University and Edinburgh College of Art.
  • Lin has contributed to several contemporary jewellery and design publications, most notably New Directions in Jewellery II 2007
  • Her recent projects include a Museumaker 2 jewellery commission for mima (Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art) completed in March 2011 and running ‘The social life of jewellery’ workshop at The Salzburg International Summer Academy of Fine Arts, August 2011
  • More details and a visual archive of Lin’s work can be viewed at


As it heads towards its £2bn budget for staging the Olympic and Paralympic Games, LOCOG has seven domestic Tier One Partners - adidas, BMW, BP, British Airways, BT, EDF and Lloyds TSB. There are seven domestic Tier Two Supporters – Adecco, ArcelorMittal, Cadbury, Cisco, Deloitte, Thomas Cook and UPS. There are now twenty-five domestic Tier Three Suppliers and Providers – Aggreko, Airwave, Atkins, Boston Consulting Group, CBS Outdoor, Crystal CG, Eurostar, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP, G4S, GSK, Gymnova, Heineken UK, Holiday Inn, John Lewis, McCann Worldgroup, Mondo, Next, The Nielsen Company, Populous, Rapiscan Systems, Rio Tinto, Technogym, Thames Water, Ticketmaster and Trebor.

There is one domestic Tier One Paralympic Games Partner, Sainsbury’s and one domestic Tier Three Paralympic Supplier, Otto Bock.

The Worldwide Olympic Partners signed up for London 2012 are Coca-Cola, Acer, Atos, Dow Chemical Company, GE, McDonald’s, Omega, Panasonic, Procter and Gamble, Samsung and Visa.

The Hunterian

The Hunterian is Scotland's oldest public museum and home to one of the largest collections outside the National Museums. It is one of Scotland’s most important cultural assets and one of the leading university museums in the UK. Its collections have been Recognised as a Collection of National Significance.

Built on Dr William Hunter’s founding bequest, The Hunterian collections include scientific instruments used by James Watt, Joseph Lister and Lord Kelvin; outstanding Roman artefacts from the Antonine Wall; major natural and life sciences holdings; Hunter’s own extensive anatomical teaching collection; one of the world’s greatest numismatic collections; impressive ethnographic objects from Captain Cook’s Pacific voyages and a major art collection.

The Hunterian is also home to the world’s largest permanent display of the work of James McNeill Whistler, the largest single holding of the work of Charles Rennie Mackintosh and The Mackintosh House, the reassembled interiors from his Glasgow home.

The Hunterian continues in its Age on Enlightenment mission to be a central resource for research and teaching in the arts, humanities and natural and medical sciences, attracting scholars and visitors from around the world.


<< July