Dear Mr. Jeppson:
In its meeting of 15 September, the Commission of Fine Arts reviewed alternative designs for the American Eagle platinum coins to be issued for the years 2018, 2019, and 2020. The Commission was pleased to see the coordinated groupings of three obverse designs, each set prepared by a single artist, for the three-year sequence of themes drawn from the Declaration of Independence—“Life,” “Liberty,” and “the Pursuit of Happiness”—as well as alternatives for a single reverse that would continue for the three years.
The Commission members present discussed the relative merits of several sets of obverse alternatives, and they provided ranked recommendations with comments for the Mint’s consideration:
1) Their first choice was Set #3, due to its thoughtful focus on elements of the Statue of Liberty to illustrate the three-year sequence of themes, each with a simple design.
2) Their second choice was Set #2, which features stylized graphics that form a compelling larger composition when the three coins are placed together. However, they did not support the set’s design for the 2020 coin, commenting that it misses the subtlety of the historic theme—“the Pursuit of Happiness”— by simplistically conveying a concept of generic happiness; they therefore suggested developing a new design for the 2020 coin if the Mint gives further consideration to this set.
3) As a third choice, they recommended Set #10, commenting that the simple designs provide a powerful focus on the actual words of the Declaration used as themes for the coins.
For the common reverse of the three-year series, the Commission members supported using alternative #9, as well as those included in the recommended sets.
As a quorum was not present for the review of this submission, these recommendations will be placed on the administrative agenda for confirmation at the Commission’s meeting of 20 October. As always, the staff is available to assist you with future submissions.
/s/Thomas E. Luebke, FAIA
Principal Deputy Director
United States Mint
801 9th Street, NW, 8th Floor
Washington, DC 20220