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Bridges on the Euro Notes

Started by <k>, July 27, 2013, 01:52:54 PM

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<k>

Quote from: chrisild on July 27, 2013, 11:18:07 AM
depicting existing bridges and arches was out of the question

Christian

Or was it?

The Euro - Russ Swan

Extracts:

One of my main jobs was editing a magazine called Bridge Design and Engineering.The Pont de Normandie was still under construction near Le Havre. I'd met the designer of the bridge, Michel Virlogeux, a couple of times. I faxed Kalina's design over to him. Within about ten minutes my phone rang, and a rather animated Virlogeux told me that this was categorically the Pont de Normandie. He noted the same details I had pointed out – in particular the so-called 'missing pillar'.

I can't find the original newspaper articles, but I do remember reading about Mr Swan's ideas and was intrigued. Did you ever get to hear about them in Germany, Christian? I wasn't interested from a eurosceptic point of view, either, because, although I'm not in favour of the euro for the UK, I do strongly identify culturally and geographically as a European, and I thought that the idea that depicting the bridges of foreign countries could be offensive was very narrow-minded. For Mr Swan himself, finding the originals seems to have been a quest driven by purely by his personal interest, though the interests of the media were probably less than pure.
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chrisild

Well, now we're talking about the notes ;) but yes, the fact that Kalina's "Ages and Styles" designs initially showed actually existing bridges is fairly well known. In fact, several designs submitted by others showed "real" objects, see here. Why not? The competition conditions merely said that "any national bias" was to be avoided - which admittedly is difficult if you pick style elements from countries A and B but not C ...

As far as I know, one of the reasons for the jury to pick Kalina's designs was that the bridges and arches were actually "neutral" or could easily be made "neutral". I never found it surprising that a designer who puts a Roman bridge on a note (or coin) has something like the Pont du Gard in his mind, and for Baroque-Rococo it could indeed be the Pont de Neuilly. The point is - and even Mr Swan admits that, in the last paragraph which is primarily about something quite different than the designs - that Robert Kalina modified his designs in some regards, so that the bridges, windows and bridges are not "reproductions" of specific buildings.

Christian

<k>

Quote from: chrisild on July 27, 2013, 02:32:45 PM
The point is - and even Mr Swan admits that, in the last paragraph which is primarily about something quite different than the designs - that Robert Kalina modified his designs in some regards, so that the bridges, windows and bridges are not "reproductions" of specific buildings.

Christian

Yes, it's what actually happened that is interesting, and I am in any case interested in proto-designs. So if Robert Kalina modified his designs as a reaction to this, then that is interesting - alongside the fact that he, or anyone, felt it necessary to alter them as a result of a 'fuss'.
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chrisild

Unfortunately nobody has ever invited to one of the meetings where such design issues were discussed. ;) So I don't know what exactly was changed. But Robert Kalina himself talked about some changes he had to do. For example, the British insisted on adding the Shetland Islands to the map, so he had to do that. Then the Portuguese said, wait, if the British get that, we want the Açores to be added, and the Germans brought Rügen up ...

Attached is a screenshot from a newspaper article published in May 2004. Manfred Curbach, a professor in Dresden, tried to find "real life" bridges that look like Kalina's euro bridges. The part with the red frame is where the edited versions are mentioned. Sorry, I know this may be news for you, but it is not exactly a secret.

What I find somewhat amusing is that, on the new euro notes, the map is quite a bit smaller. So quite a few details are difficult to recognize now. Also, the second series (still based on Kalina's designs but edited by Reinhold Gerstetter) moved the angle; so now you get an almost frontal view of the Roman bridge. We'll see what changes will be made to the next denominations.

Side note. Shall we split the topic? Part of this is about paper money ...

Christian

<k>

Quote from: chrisild on July 27, 2013, 04:01:30 PM
the British insisted on adding the Shetland Islands to the map, so he had to do that.
Of course, don't you know how important we are? You still left off British Antarctic Territory, though.  ::)

Quote
Sorry, I know this may be news for you, but it is not exactly a secret.

I didn't expect it to be a secret. There is no subtext here, only an interest in the deliberations. Why do you think I am moderator of 'Unrealised designs' ?  ;)

Perhaps they should ditch the map and replace it with the member country initials. The founding six, FR, DE, IT, etc., could have their initials in an inner circle, with an outer circle (to avoid precedence or hierarchy) reserved for the rest.
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