In March, Jewish cofounder Phil Sklar announced that the National Bobblehead Hall of Fame and Museum in Milwaukee would create a Volodymyr Zelensky figurine to raise funds for Ukraine relief.
Now the nonprofit Jewish-American Hall of Fame has commissioned Jim Licaretz, a former sculptor-engraver at the U.S. Mint, to create a bold portrait of Ukraine’s Jewish president for a series of limited-edition art medals — with 100% of the profits going to aid Ukrainians at home and as refugees.
The reverse of the medals features Zelensky’s inspirational words, “Our truth is that this is our land,” and the state seal of Ukraine. The quote comes from a speech in which Zelensky said, “We are not putting down arms. We will be defending our country, because our weapon is truth, and our truth is that this is our land, our country, our children and we will defend all of this.”
Licaretz created the original model in resin using a 3-D printer. He then made a mold and will cast medals in bonded bronze, each of which he will finish by hand.
Zelensky was born to Jewish parents on Jan. 27, 1978, in Kryvyi Rih, then in the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic. His great-grandfather and his three great-granduncles died in the Holocaust.
Zelensky earned a degree in law from Kyiv National Economic University. He then pursued comedy and created a company that produced films, cartoons and TV shows, including the series “Servant of the People,” in which Zelensky played a Ukrainian president. In 2019, Zelensky actually ran and won the presidential election, with over 73 percent of the votes.
The Hall of Fame said that no more than 199 Zelensky medals will be issued, with a limit of three medals per person, each accompanied by a certificate of authenticity. If all medals are sold, a contribution of about $15,000 will be made.
Visit https://amuseum.org for more information.