United States Mint Director David J. Ryder announced that Sculptor-Engraver Joe Menna has been named Chief Engraver of the United States Mint.
Menna joined the Mint in 2005, and he brings 32 years of professional experience and classical training to the position. He was the first full-time digitally skilled artist hired by the United States Mint. Menna was instrumental in the development of the United States Mint’s first digitally sculpted coins and continues to distinguish himself as a leader in this constantly evolving craft.
Prior to joining the Mint, Menna worked as a sculptor and instructor at the Johnson Atelier Fine Art Foundry in Mercer County, N.J., creating life-sized figures and working digitally on projects for a variety of clients. Concurrently, he pursued his own sculpting and created many works, notably a seven-foot tall cupro-nickel statue for the Grounds for Sculpture and a temporary 30-foot tall monument for the Hamilton train station in Hamilton, N.J.
His work has won multiple Krause Publications’ Coin of the Year awards in various categories. Menna has been honored both for coins he sculpted and designed, and for coins he sculpted from other artists’ designs. In addition to his work at the United States Mint, he maintains an active freelance career in toys and collectibles, and he is recognized as one of the world’s leading practitioners of digital sculpture.
Menna holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in sculpture from the University of the Arts, a Master of Fine Arts degree in sculpture from the New York Academy of Art, with post- graduate study at the Saint Petersburg Stieglitz State Academy of Art and Design in St. Petersburg, Russia. His continuing professional education includes studies at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art, the Sculpture Center, and the Art Students League.
For a comprehensive catalog of Joe Menna’s works for the US Mint, please visit their website.
If you want to see Joe Menna at work, there is a film at Youtube (start from beginning 6:37)
The Inquirer offers an interesting article about the artist and his way of working.