Dora De Pédery-Hunt
DORA DE PÉDERY-HUNT, the doyenne of Canadian medallists, has been a leading figure of the Helicon Society for many years. By arranging the Gala Evening at the Royal Ontario Museum in the 1970s she succeeded in establishing the Helicon Society firmly in the ranks of the social elite.
As a dedicated, helpful and enthusiastic college teacher, lecturer and seminar leader, she was generous in passing on her knowledge and sharing her talent, both here in Canada and abroad. Her captivating personality and unselfish participation enriched many an event, whether organized by Hungarian or Canadian associations.
Today her works can be found in museums and medal collections all over the world. As a designer of coins she is perhaps best known for her effigy of Her Majesty the Queen which can be seen on every Canadian coin minted since 1992. This was incidentally the first time that a Canadian and not a British citizen had designed the official depiction of Queen Elizabeth II.
It should not be forgotten that Dora is essentially a sculptor and that medals are just one important aspect of her work. Her sculptures adorn the walls of buildings and churches, while her small sculptures are regularly exhibited. As a member of a number of artistic societies of renown she remains to the present day a guiding light of Canada’s fine art scene.
Honours and awards
—Officer of the Order of Canada, 1974
— Order of Ontario, 1991
— L.L.D. Litt., York University, Toronto, Ontario, 1983
— L.L.D. Law, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario, 1990
— Civic Award of Merit, 1979
— Centennial Medal, Government of Canada, 1967
— Queen’s Jubilee Medal, Government of Canada, 1977
— Confederation Medal, Government of Canada, 1992
— American Numismatic Association, Gold Medal for Excellence in Numismatic Sculpture, 1992
— L.L.D. St. Michael’s College, University of Toronto, 1999
— “Pro Cultura Hungarica” Medal, Ministry of Culture, Budapest, Hungary, 2001
— J. Sanford Saltus Award Medal for Signal Achievement in the Art of the Medal, The American Numismatic Society, New York, U.S.A.
Article by Rose Dancs