The Laidlaw Research and Leadership Programme


Ha Eun Monica Park: going for gold

Ha Eun Monica Park worked with Dr Allison Stielau and Dr Alison Wright (Department of History of Art) on a project entitled “Mapping Gold in London”. 

Testing gold

8 February 2019

The aim of the project was to map and investigate sites around London which have are linked to the use of gold such as banking, jewellery making, commodities trading etc. 

Monica’s work fed directly into a wider project looking at the changing values attached to gold, from cultural and financial value to political and aesthetic value.

For this project, Monica visited and documented numerous sites around London, and met a number of experts who worked with gold in some capacity. 

She managed to interview staff from the Assay Office, which provides testing and hallmarking of precious metals in accordance with the Hallmarking Act, and from the Goldsmith’s Centre which trains goldsmiths.

Gold hallmarks

Monica not only gained practical skills such as good time management and self-motivation, she was also able to make a link between her History of Art degree and its practical application in the workplace. 

She thoroughly enjoyed undertaking this project, and would recommend the Laidlaw programme to all first year undergraduates. 

She stated:

“This year’s Laidlaw Scholarship Project on gold gave me an unforgettable memory of the summer. If I had not applied, I would not have got the chance for all these great learning opportunities.”