In its meeting of 18 October, the Commission of Fine Arts reviewed alternative designs for medals honoring the U.S. Air Force and the U.S. Coast Guard, part of a new series of commemorative medals for the nation’s armed forces. The Commission provided the following recommendations and comments.
U.S. Air Force. The Commission members recommended obverse #1, citing its strong, dynamic composition and supporting this design’s recommendation by the Mint’s Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee (CCAC). For the reverse, they recommended an adaptation of the design presented as obverse #7 for its superior design featuring a falcon and lightning bolt. While they noted the CCAC’s preference for reverse alternative #4, they questioned the desirability of including a portrait as the primary compositional feature on both sides of the medal. Nevertheless, they supported the inclusion of the three phrases of the Air Force motto as seen in reverse #4, suggesting that these phrases be added at the periphery of the design for obverse #7.
U.S. Coast Guard. The Commission members recommended obverse #4B and reverse #9, consistent with the preferences of the CCAC. They cited the drama and simplicity of obverse #4B but commented that it may be unrealistic or confusing in its depiction of a ship riding high in the water; they encouraged further refinement of the artistry, possibly including adjustments to the waves, the position of the ship, or the addition of a horizon line. They supported the simplicity of reverse #9 depicting the Coast Guard logo.
As always, the staff is available to assist you with future submissions.
/s/Thomas E. Luebke, FAIA
David Ryder, Director United States Mint 801 9th Street, NW, 8th Floor Washington, DC 20220