During a meeting held on July 21, 2011, the Commission of Fine Arts (CFA) reviewed the design candidates provided by the United States Mint for commemorative $5 gold coins and silver dollars to be issued in 2012 for the bicentennial of the writing of the Star Spangled Banner.
The US Mint provided ten different obverse and eight different reverse design candidates for the $5 gold coin, and six different obverse and nine different reverse design candidates for the silver dollar. According to the authorizing legislation, the designs for the coins “shall be emblematic of the War of 1812 and particularly the Battle for Baltimore that formed the basis for the Star-Spangled Banner.”
The final designs for the coins are to be selected by the Treasury of the Secretary after consultation with the Maryland War of 1812 Bicentennial Commission, the Commission of Fine Arts, and review by the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee.
For the obverse of the $5 gold coin, the CFA recommended alternative 8, indicating that it presented “the most coherent and balanced composition with the best configuration of text and quality of drawing.” They did suggest adding an identifying inscription “Fort McHenry”. Alternative 8 was suggested for the reverse design of the coin “for its simple abstraction of the flag”. The commission did suggest using a circular border format used within one of the other alternatives.
For the obverse of the silver dollar, alternative 1 was recommended. The CFA commended the “unusually high quality of the drawing”, but suggested removing the smaller ship in the background and using the text “War at Sea” rather than “Privateers”. Alternative 6 was recommended for the reverse design. Suggestions were made to move the inscriptions to the circumference of the coin and to coordinate the typefaces used for the obverse and reverse of the coin.
General comments were provided by commission members on the design candidates for coins and medals provided by the US Mint. Many of these comments echoed similar observations and recommendations provided during other reviews. CFA Secretary Thomas E. Luebke summarized commission members comments as follows:
They reiterated their preference for simplicity in the design of these small objects, noting the excessive number of design elements in most of the submitted alternatives. They also reiterated their concern with the quality of the artwork and composition, encouraging the Mint to attract outside artists to the design process. Finally, they emphasized a preference for placing the standardized information of the coin, such as mottoes and denomination, toward the outer edge in a readily identifiable circumferential zone which would typically be separate from the central design elements; the typeface of the text should also be coordinated between the obverse and reverse.
Other $5 Gold Coin Obverse Design Candidates
Other $5 Gold Coin Reverse Design Candidates
Other Silver Dollar Obverse Design Candidates
Other Silver Dollar Reverse Design Candidates