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Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Limited Edition Medallion for the Dalai Lama

We recently had the privilege of working with the Gere Foundation, Healing the Divide, and The Tibet Center in designing a V.I.P. badge commemorating His Holiness the XIV Dalai Lama’s 2007 visit to New York City. Healing the Divide and The Tibet Center wanted to transcend the typical V.I.P event lanyard and create a unique token to present to their Sponsors, a token that would last longer than the event and perhaps be worn or carried for years to come.

Enter us, Billykirk.

We decided early on that it probably wasn’t the best idea to incorporate leather into a design meant to honor the Dalai Lama and after a bit of research, we designed a unisex, solid brass medallion that could be worn around the neck or wrist by a custom-dyed hemp cord. Made from a wax model and cast in brass, each medallion is engraved on both sides. The front of the medallion reads, ‘My religion is kindness’ which we sampled from a well-known quote of the Dalai Lama’s, "My religion is simple, my religion is kindness." The back of the medallion reads, ‘His Holiness the Dalai Lama New York October 2007". Decorating the edge of each piece are 108 small indentations which represent the 108 malas on a traditional Buddhist prayer bead bracelet. The medallions were then tumbled in order to give them a "worn river stone" look and hand-strung with polished Hungarian hemp cording, thanks to Marisande Fisher of Radiant Hemp. She was about the only one who could get the specific cording we were looking for and was also able to dye it to match the color of His Holiness’ robes. For this limited edition, only 200 pieces were cast.

Wrapped in our signature bag and custom-stamped with the two organizations’ names, the medallions were given to Sponsors for special V.I.P entry into Radio City Music Hall. When we arrived at Radio City to see all of our medallions being worn in honor of this “simple Buddhist monk”, we were very pleased by the end result. To later learn that His Holiness was personally presented with one was the icing on the cake.

We were not alone in this collaborative effort and want to especially thank our talented friend Mollie Rodriguez of the Gere Foundation and Healing the Divide for her unyielding support. We’d also like to thank our brilliant production team for the energy and creation they put into this project.

Billykirk – Medallion Concept and Design

Annie Costello Brown – 3D color renderings (Dear friend, designer of ACB Jewelry and Mac expert)

Sheri Liska – Wax mold maker (Skilled beyond words)

Radiant Hemp – Hungarian hemp cording (Marisande is a sweet heart and knows her stuff)

JD Manufacturing - Brass medallion casting (We can always count on Jim)

*Click on Images to enlarge.


Blogger Patrick Costa said...

What I would give for one of these!

September 18, 2009 at 10:24 PM  

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