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Britishness

Started by augsburger, May 14, 2016, 01:46:32 PM

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augsburger

Here's a thread I wanted to start with some designs, and I might get round to it, but I've just been busy with other stuff.

However after the coin design competition for the 1 pound coin based around Britishness, and then seeing the winning design, I've come to think that the coin represents nothing about Britain at all. This isn't the designer's fault in any way, and this isn't criticism of the coin design.

I don't think symbolism represents what Britain is. A dragon, a lion, a unicorn? When was the last time you saw a wild any of these hanging around?
Also the symbolism of flowers.

There have been bridges which represents Britain slightly more, but I think maybe something else would be better.

However, what I'd like to ask people is, what would you put on a coin or series of coins for "Britishness"?

My thoughts at the moment have been: buildings. Buildings are what we see all around us.

A series with something ancient, something from Roman times, something from Shakespeare's time, something from the Vitorian era, something more modern and maybe something fancy, Buckingham Palace, for example. Or perhaps a castle in there somewhere too.

Buildings that represent British history.

This idea I gained from reading about the oak tree design that eventually lost to Dent's jigsaw thing.

So, what is Britishness and what do you think would best?

Also, if you'd like to make a mock up of one (artistic skills are not required) for discussion too.


quaziright

Fish and chips
Haggis or any bland food
Downtown Abby
Red bus
Stiff upper lip
Subtle sarcasm
Bad teeth
Geri Halliwell or any other singer in a Union Jack one piece
Former imperialist now lost (US) poodle

Some of these could translate onto coins; others not so much...Hard to separate Britishness from stereotypes ;)... Just being a little cheeky :)

Gusev

Red telephone box
Sir Arthur Ignatius Conan Doyle
"Those at the top of the mountain didn't fall there."- Marcus Washling.

<k>

Here are some of my specifically English ideas: One Anglo.

But England is part of Britain, of course. We have eight denominations for the UK, which has four constituent countries. Simple!
Visit the website of The Royal Mint Museum.

See: The Royal Mint Museum.

bart

English breakfast
Tea time
Snooker
Cricket

Figleaf

For me, the essence is the language at its best: famous authors, poets, books, plays. Some candidates: the rhyme of the ancient mariner, Sir Walter Scott, the Canterbury tales, Rudyard Kipling (but not any of his children's stories), Gulliver's travels and of course William Shakespeare.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

Alan71

I would have said native British or UK wildlife, but I don't think we have enough to cover eight coins.

It's so hard to define "Britishness" with Scotland seemingly wanting to go its own way and Wales aspiring to do similar (and even Cornwall having ideas above its station).  Plus "Britishness" by definition excludes Northern Ireland.  It is, afterall, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

FosseWay

Quote from: quaziright on May 14, 2016, 04:02:11 PM

Bad teeth


I've come across this stereotype quite often, and don't get it. Sure, people in the UK don't go in for significant modifications to their teeth for purely aesthetic reasons as wealthy Americans often do, but I don't think that similarly wealthy people in the rest of Europe do either. A stereotype/caricature is only funny or relevant if it includes an element of truth, which I don't see that this does.

(From a 41-year-old Brit with entirely trouble-free teeth - no fillings, no decay and no aesthetic work either  ;))

malj1

A very Britishness - England's Pride medalet

from here
Malcolm
Have a look at  my tokens and my banknotes.

redwine

A person joining the end of a queue.  ;D
Always willing to trade.  See my profile for areas of interest.

Figleaf

#10
... and standing on the right of the escalator. We have lived in France too long, maybe?

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

augsburger

But what would you want to present to the rest of the world that tells them what British means? What are the good things?

History?
Architecture?
Culture?
Everyday things?

constanius

An umbrella & welly boots ;D

Pat

quaziright

Quote from: augsburger on May 20, 2016, 02:44:14 AM
But what would you want to present to the rest of the world that tells them what British means? What are the good things?

History?
Architecture?
Culture?
Everyday things?

Seriously answering this question, I would imagine Britain wants to be forward looking rather than harking to a past it can never reach again. So for me that rules out History. Architecture also gets ruled out because it is more backward looking (if you talk of historic buildings). It also seems banal if you think of Including the shard/guerken/london eye etc, because these really are not all that special in a global context.

For me that leaves culture and every day things that I can imagine being forward looking. Maybe a circulation series that encapsulates the ideals of New Britain - multiculturism, freedom of thought/expression, democracy, social welfare (?) etc etc .

Again, these exists in other countries too. But probably britain for me ranks among the top 10 when I think about countries that actually practice these. Maybe use animals as a motif to represent each ideal... dove for peace, swan for social welfare or whatever animal you think best corresponds to each ideal


redwine

I don't think it can be expressed with anything tangible.
I also believe the sense of Britishness (more Welshness) that I grew up with is disappearing.  :'(
Always willing to trade.  See my profile for areas of interest.