The last 64 years of Eurovision is blasted through water to inspire the Royal Dutch Mint’s new anniversary medal

For those of you around the world that have never heard of the Eurovision Song Contest, it’s an annual song competition for the countries in and around Europe. Each participating nation enters a song (or at least what loosely passes for one…), and then every nation gets to vote, by giving points to its favourites in declining order. As you would expect, the voting is often blatantly biased around national politics and many tune in just for the results – an often comical process.

Unsurprisingly, this years Eurovision has been killed by Covid-19, so we’re being spared the assault on our eardrums, but the Royal Dutch Mint has pressed ahead with what is a quite intriguing medallion to celebrate both the 65th anniversary of the competition, and the Dutch hosting of it. At its core is a simple one-ounce silver medal with a small colour highlight, but how they designed it is very innovative.

A soundtrack was made by mixing together every one of the winners from the last 64 years of songs to form a single unintelligable mix (probably easy to do given how unintelligable most of the originals were…). A bowl of water was placed on a speaker, through which the sound was blasted until the water begged for mercy. The resulting ripple pattern on the surface of the water was then recorded, turned into a 3D model and then a die was formed from it.

The end result is pretty neat and it’s impressive just how much thought and attention has been expended on the design by the mint. With between 100-600 million viewers tuning in to the competition every year, the mint should have little trouble shifting the 3,000 mintage, and it comes presented in a latex floating frame. Available to order now for €119, it will ship from next month, although that may well be subject to delay.

MINTS DESCRIPTION

In this ingenious design all editions of the Eurovision Song Contest come together. To obtain this, Dutch music producer Eric van Tijn created an unintelligible mix containing all songs from the 64 previous editions.

Designer Juan Sanchez-Castano developed a unique installation which he placed in the middle of Rotterdam Ahoy, the venue that would have hosted the Eurovision Song Contest 2020. The installation holds a speaker. On that speaker a bowl is placed, filled with water taken from the Maas (a river in Rotterdam). The water was handed to us by Rotterdam “Eurovision councilor” Said Kasmi. The mix was then played on the speaker. The sound waves of the mix became visible through the vibrations of the water on the speaker.

Sanchez-Castano documented the vibrations and transferred them to a 3D model and eventually into a physical product with a special relief. The 65 years of Eurovision Medal is a tangible keepsake in which the history of Eurovision is captured in a unique way.

The medal has a visible relief, in the same way the music created a relief in the water. On the reverse of the medal the same vibrations are visible. In the center the Eurovision Song Contest 2020 logo is placed.

SPECIFICATION
DENOMINATION Not applicable
COMPOSITION 0.999 silver
WEIGHT 31.1 grams
DIMENSIONS 38.7 mm
FINISH Prooflike
MODIFICATIONS Colour
MINTAGE 3,000
BOX / C.O.A. Yes / Yes
ROYAL DUTCH MINT