Make a mark to last all time

Métiers d’art are ancient ...and protected in France

We do not give a thought to everyday coins, yet the work of a médailleur in designing, engraving, and then minting medals and coins is far from mundane; it needs a rare combination of complex skills and
a know-how passed down from generation to generation

The design process is painstaking, with research and client consultation before the drawings are done. Sculpted in plaster using bas-relief techniques, they are coated in resin for a mould, from which a steel die is created. Surface details are finished by hand before the die is used to strike medals or coins.

In the workshop of a master médailleur, the use of machines, known in English as ‘punches’, is limited. A ‘reduction punch’ tool may be used to reduce the scale of a die to the size of the real object, enabling the craftsman to sculpt in greater detail ...

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