of Africa
Money, medals
and stamps

1 April 2010 – 6 February 2011

Exhibition closed

Room 69a

Find out about African history and identity through money, medals
and stamps.

This small display looks at the images of Africa presented on the coins, banknotes, medals and stamps made for the continent during the past 100 years. These miniature art works reflect changing national identities, and celebrate the cultures and heritage of Africa and its people.

In 2010 the world’s attention is focused on Africa,
as 17 countries celebrate the 50th anniversary of independence from colonial rule.

The display features a series of case studies from across time and regions, including Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, Ethiopia, French West Africa, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa
and Zimbabwe.

Looking closely at these fascinating objects shows how national identities have been constructed and reinforced through the images on them, as well as changes in the representation of Africa and Africans during the 20th century, from colonial rule to independence and beyond.

This exhibition is part of the London 2010 Festival of Stamps, a year-long celebration of stamps, stamp design and postal heritage.

South African 2 rand coin

South African 2 rand coin commemorating the 10th anniversary of democratic elections. South Africa, 2004.