Ancient coins: heads and tales from antique lands

The Ian Potter Museum of Art, at the University of Melbourne, will present a unique insight into the ancient world with the display of one of Australia’s finest collections of ancient Greek and Roman coins. The exhibition will feature selected coins from the empires of the Greco-Roman world as well as examples from periods and regions beyond.

Art Exhibition previously on at Ian Potter Museum of Art in Melbourne precinct, Victoria, Australia.
From Saturday 23 October 2010 to Sunday 10 April 2011

Silver drachm with flying Pegasus image Silver stater with Pegasus and head of Athena wearing a Corinthian helmet image

Published by Ian Potter Museum of Art on Monday 04 October 2010.
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Classics and Archaeology Curator at the Potter, Dr Andrew Jamieson, says “the coins reveal fascinating insights into the history, culture and society of the time.”

“In the ancient world, coins were an ideal way of depicting myths, disseminating information, reinforcing a political message or for propaganda purposes.”

“Made of copper, bronze, silver and gold the ancient coins featured in this exhibition display unique aesthetic qualities, fine craftsmanship and intricate details on a small scale requiring close inspection.”

The exhibition features selected coins from the University of Melbourne’s extensive collection, and rare coins from several Melbourne private collections.

Many of the coins have never been publicly displayed, as their intricate details become lost in larger display cabinets. The Potter has installed specially designed fixtures, which allow visitors to experience the ancient coinage in a clear and accessible manner.

Dr Jamieson says, “This exhibition gives people the opportunity to reflect on fascinating and complex cultures and ideas through the coinage of the ancient world.”