Welcome back to the Creative Awards blog. In today's entry we channel our inner Tolkien, Game of Thrones and Monster Hunter Generations in our latest bespoke award. We are immensely proud of this stunning custom made award, commissioned by the City of London Corporation, The City of London Silver Metal Gryphon.
The custom metal award immediately took an important place within the Creative Awards canon of works. We were immensely proud to be approached by The City of London Corporation and excited to be given the responsibility to create an award for this integral part of London's varied, historic and diverse culture.
What better way to capture the City than with a potent symbol that is recognised across the land and across the world? To create the piece we started by looking to the streets of the City in search of something that captures the feel, pageantry and history of the place.
Indeed, for over 700 years the gryphon has been used as a symbol for the City of London, colloquially known as the Square Mile, which can be defined as the historic and business centre of London that was founded by the Romans in 1AD. Over the course of history, London has expanded significantly yet the City remains an intriguing part of London's folklore with its own administrative branch.
What does remain, however, is the symbol that has evolved and changed across nearly 800 years. Originally introduced in AD 138, the coat of arms of the City of London featured a saint George's flag on a shield with a red, upturned sword in the upper left quadrant. Over the centuries, the coat of arms underwent many changes. In the 17th century, the supporters and the crest were added and it has been thought that the dragons were in reference to the legend of Saint George and the dragon.
The fearsome beast that is the symbol for The City is a legendary creature with the body, tail, and back legs of a lion, the head and wings of an eagle, and an eagle's talons as its front feet. Because the lion was traditionally considered the king of the beasts and the eagle the king of birds, the gryphon was thought to be an especially powerful and majestic creature.
To create the award we took the existing, iconic imagery and added nothing. We firmly felt that with such a historic piece it was best to not break with tradition and use the existing work to create the statue. Cast from silver metal, the bespoke award features a highly detailed body. To bring the beast to life the shield was hand painted with red and white enamel to mimic the statues which stand in the City. Resting on a simple, black resin base, the award is truly one of our favourites.
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