Hugo Awards - Base Design

The World Science Fiction Convention has given out the Hugo Awards for achievement in Science Fiction and Fantasy since the early 1950s. The Hugo trophy comprises a metal rocket on a base.

The Hugo Award rocket was inspired by the finned rockets of Willy Ley and was designed by Jack McKnight and Ben Jason. (In one famous case in 1956, Dave Kyle got away with using hood-mascots from an Oldsmobile model.) The rocket design has become standardized in recent years and the rockets are currently produced by British fan Peter Weston. (For more about the way the rockets are made, read this article on the official Hugo Awards website.)

The design for the base on which the rocket is mounted is, however, the responsibility of each Worldcon committee, and changes each year. This is an honor that Worldcon committees take very seriously and typically the design is created either by direct commission of an artist or designer or by open competition.

A photographic archive of many of the previous bases can be found here.

The 2013 Hugo Award Base

LoneStarCon 3 is delighted to announce that the 2013 Hugo Award base will be designed by Texas-based artist Vincent Villafranca. Vincent is a Chesley Award-winning sculptor who produces futuristic and fantastic bronzes using the traditional lost-wax casting process. As you can see from the image below, work to produce the 2013 bases is already well under way! However, in keeping with tradition, the design will not be revealed until the convention itself.

Casting the 2013 Hugo Award Base

The 1997 Hugo Award Base

The Worldcon has been to Texas just once before, for LoneStarCon 2 in 1997. (If you are wondering, LoneStarCon 1 was a NASFiC, held in 1985, rather than a Worldcon). The 1997 Hugo Award base, shown below, was designed by Clayburn Moore and very visible inspired by the shape of the State of Texas itself (Photo: Sheila Perry).