Last week I asked who could name the Canadian sculptor of the Fields medal, the most valued prize in mathematics.
Scott Miller writes:
It appears to be the work of R. Tait McKenzie, with his monogram to the left of the bust.
Correct! Pete Smith also had the correct answer. Here's some more background, from n October 2011 article in Science Reporter.
The Fields medal was designed by a Canadian sculptor R. Tait McKenzie. Its obverse carries the image of Archimedes and a quote attributed to him, which reads "Transire suum pectus mundoque potiri" in latin, whose English translation is "Rise above oneself andgrasp the world."
To read the complete article, see:
Fields Medal: Nobel Prize for Young Mathematicians
Coincidentally, the one medal that caught my eye in Joe Levine's e-mail Token And Medal Mini Sale List #87 was also the work of R. Tait McKenzie. With permission, here's Joe's description. He can be reached at
"THE JOY OF EFFORT", 1914. Kozar #35. 76.6mm. Silver. R. Tait
McKenzie, Sc. (MACO). Uniface. Edge with a very faint MACO Danbury edgemark. Uncirculated. A dynamic view of three runners in full stride as they pass over a hurdle. A banner below is inscribed: THE JOY OF EFFORT.
Kozar comments, "This medallion is recognized by those who know McKenzie's work as the most beautiful of all he produced." In its original form of 46", it was exhibited at the 1912 Olympic Games in Stockholm and was offered by the American section of the International Olympics Committee to Sweden as a permanent memorial to the fifth Olympiad. After it was accepted, the original plaster was cast into Bronze and set into the wall beside the stadium entrance.
In 1914 McKenzie was honored by the King of Sweden when he was presented with a Silver medal in recognition of his work in athletic sculpture. In that same year, the medallion was altered slightly in both the scrolling and the hurdle position. This newer version was signed "R. Tait McKenzie 1914" and it is that version that is offered here. $85.00
To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:
STANFORD PROFESSOR AWARDED FIELDS MEDAL
Wayne Homren, Editor
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