Visit this exhibition of unusual bank notes

Apr 11, 2018, 08:21 IST | Harshita Mishra

A group of currency collectors have put up an exhibition of unusual banknotes, coins and stamps to study history through the use of money

Dharmesh Thakker, Sanjay N Joshi and Anish Mehta
Dharmesh Thakker, Sanjay N Joshi and Anish Mehta

A lot can be said about a country by studying the evolution of its currency, which is why numismatics emerged as a discipline to focus on the scientific study of money and related objects. This Sunday, a group of five Mumbai-based collectors are set to put up their numismatic collections on display through an eclectic exhibition of unusual banknotes, stamps and coins from around the world under 12 different themes.

Banknotes from Nepal
Banknotes from Nepal

"Unfortunately, there is a lack of guidance universally when it comes to collecting [currency] notes. Data books are available, but they only provide erratic lists of items with no mention of their significance. So, we have to rely on our rigorous study and research," says Anish Mehta, who developed an interest in collecting currency notes as a result of his globe-trotting work. An entrepreneur and a numismatist who specialises in studying demonetised banknotes from around the world, his collection at the exhibition will display a series of hyperinflation notes from different countries — banknotes in denominations of one million or more.

Hyperinflation theme: High denomination notes from Germany
Hyperinflation theme: High denomination notes from Germany

Other key themes at the event include alphabetical currencies, unusual notes printed vertically and on materials like silk and linen, notes whose denominations have been changed by an overprint stamp, and banknotes from countries with their population under 5 lakh. The oldest banknote at the exhibition dates back to the 15th century, under a segment that focuses on currency issued before 1900. An exclusive section showcases all notes from Nepal that have been issued since 1945.

Denominations can be changed by an overprinted stamp, as seen in these deflated currency notes
Denominations can be changed by an overprinted stamp, as seen in these deflated currency notes

Interestingly, none of the items at the event are for sale, since Mehta believes that the aim of numismatics is not merely to amass large wealth of currency items. "Although numismatics is a much wider field, it has been reduced to buying and selling of historic currency through ignorant traders and hobbyists who give no importance to context. We aim to change that and bring knowledge to the forefront again," Mehta explains.

Money matters

Along with the display, the exhibition will have presentations facilitated by the collectors themselves to provide a detailed understanding of the themes. The event will also feature an art exhibit dedicated to tribal artefacts and illustrations

On: April 15, 12 pm to 8 pm
At: Sheila Raheja Hall, Rotary Centre, Santacruz West.
Call: 26607217

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