The topic of U.S. coin design has been in the spotlight recently, following public complaints from some members of the Commission of Fine Arts (CFA) and Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee (CCAC).
Shortly after the criticisms, the US Mint opened its doors to some members of the press to explain their coin design process and allow some of their sculptors to respond. Here’s a video segment posted on Wallet Pop and an article from Numismatic News.
A week later, the CCAC voted to form a subcommittee on Coin Design Excellence at their June 28 public meeting. So far the CCAC and subcommittee have adopted a list of 17 characteristics of design excellence and created a visual reference guide. The goal of these efforts will be to help “ignite the renaissance” in coin design. Responses to the subcommittee have ranged from positive to skeptical.
As a change of pace, I thought it would be interesting to have a poll allowing readers to vote for the best US Mint coin or medal design so far this year. By my count, there have been 11 different coins or medals released for circulation or issued with a unique design on at least one side of the coin.
I wanted to make this a “mid-year” poll, so I did not include the second half designs for America the Beautiful Quarters and Presidential Dollars, even though they have technically been issued in the component proof sets. I will likely revisit this topic with a second half or full year design poll at the end of the year.
Images of each coin or medal issued with a new design during the first half of 2010 appear below, followed by the poll.
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