Looking for future medal artists 13.01.2016

At the end of December, 2015, the results of a creative competition held by Goznak at the Saint-Petersburg State Academic Institute of Fine Arts, Sculpture and Architecture named after Ilya Repin for the fifth time already, were summarized. This time the students were asked to offer ideas for possible implementation in metal on coins and medals dedicated to the 100th anniversary of Barguzin Nature Reserve. 28 students of the first and second years of the Faculty of Sculpture presented 46 modeling works (relief compositions).  

According to the results of discussion of the competition committee and voting, four best works were chosen worthy of an award (a bonus). The winners of the competition were Vitaliy Zelenko (a first-year student), Rufina Kulik, Aleandra Suleimanova and Zaurbek Dzutsev (second-year students). But there were a lot of interesting works, and the competition committee gave letters of thanks to two others – Maria Galina and Ksenia Kryazhova (third-year students).

Other competition participants also received gifts. Each of them received a set of papers for watercolours and graphics produced at the Saint-Petersburg Paper Mill of Goznak and a reprint of one of bibliographic masterpieces published at the Expedition of Storing State Papers (Goznak since 1919) many years ago.

By the way, some of the students have already participated in Goznak’s competitions before. In 2014 they were offered to present a design idea of the medal dedicated to the 70th anniversary of Victory in the Great Patriotic war. Works by Rufina Kulik and Ksenia Kryazhova were named among the four best ones then.

Arkady Trachuk, General Director of Goznak, was the Chairman of the competition committee. Goznak is traditionally represented by Aleander Baklanov, Head of the Design, an Academician, a medal artist, Yuri Pavlov, Director of the Saint-Petersburg Mint and Natalia Nikiforova, Assistant of the General Director of the company, in the committee. The Saint-Petersburg State Academic Institute of Fine Arts, Sculpture and Architecture named after Ilya Repin is represented in the committee by Semen Mikhailovskiy, Rector of the institute, Ivan Korneev, Dean of the Faculty of Sculpture, Valentin Sveshnikov, a professor of the Sculpture Department, Boris Petrov, a professor of the Sculpture Department, and Irina Korneeva, a supervisor of the same department.  

By the way,  

Holding creative competitions at the Saint-Petersburg State Academic Institute of Fine Arts, Sculpture and Architecture named after Ilya Repin has become a good tradition for Goznak. The number of students wishing to participate in the creative competition grows every year.  

In 2011 the students were offered to develop an idea of the first commemorative banknote in history dedicated to the Olympic Games in Sochi. Pavel Bushuev won the competition then. He proposed to depict a snowboarder on the front side of the banknote. The idea was applied in the design of the banknote which is well-known today.

In 2012 the competition theme was developing an idea for coins and medals dedicated to the 250th anniversary of Hermitage. A year later, the theme was the development of an idea for possible implementation in coin and order products dedicated to the World Football Cup – 2018.

Last year, Goznak announced a competition among the students of the Institute named after Ilya Repin for designing a medal dedicated to the 70th anniversary of Victory in the Great Patriotic war.

It is no coincidence that the specialists of Goznak pay a lot of attention to students’ works. The future artists provide most interesting ideas. A person unaware of delicate points of the medallic art does not always understand why the competition committee chooses this or that work or why one modeling is better than another. After the competition results had been summarized, the students didn’t want to go away for a long time. Alexander Baklanov, who heads the medallic workshop at the Institute named after Repin, had to explain the delicacies of the medallic business again and again. Sometimes an excellently modeled work will “get lost” in metal. And vice versa, a more laconic image will look more advantageous on a coin. But only a professional can see that. One needs to study a lot to gain this skill.

The medallic art has been interesting to few people in our country for a long time. We are glad that the situation is changing. Last year, for the first time in the last few decades, a pupil of Baklanov, Alexey Gridin defended his diploma successfully with a medal he had created. Today the graduate of the Saint-Petersburg Academy of Arts is working as a trainee at the Design Center of Goznak and, according to Alexander Baklanov, shows promise. There likely are future Russian medal artists also among the participants of the competition of 2015.

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