On Monday October 5th, we had the great pleasure of welcoming his Excellency, the Indonesian Ambassador to Canada, for the formal opening of our special exhibit “Numismatik Nusantara”.
Designed to celebrate the 75th anniversary of Indonesian independence this past August 17th, the exhibit consists of more than 150 coins, notes and artifacts from our personal family collection, representing 450 years of numismatic heritage.
Starting with the “Age of Independent Kingdoms”, then moving to the extensive period we refer to as “The Rise of Colonialism”, and ultimately ending with “The Birth of an Independent Republic”, the exhibit includes a number of significant rarities and unique pieces never before seen together on public display.
My first encounter with Indonesia took place as a teenager exactly 35 years ago, as I joined a diverse group of other young Canadians for the Canada World Youth Exchange. After spending our first four months in Nanaimo, B.C., we left for Indonesia in January of 1986 and proceeded to spend much of the next four months in a remote village on the island of Sumatra.
Thus began a decades-long respect and appreciation for the rich and tremendously diverse culture of what was known in colonial days as “The Spice Islands”, and this rich diversity is equally reflected in the coinage and currency of the country. This heritage certainly hasn’t gone unnoticed among collectors within Indonesia, and these past few years have witnessed a true renaissance in the study and preservation of Indonesian numismatics.
From the enthusiasm and research contributions of members of the various online forums that now prosper – such as the “Asosiasi Numismatik Nusantara”, of which I am pleased to be a member – to the multiple numismatic museums and institutions that now seem to be prospering, both the domestic hobby and its heritage seem to be in excellent hands these days.
We welcome our local customers to stop by Alliance Coin and have a browse of our exhibit, before it closes at day-end this coming Saturday October 31st. Where at all possible, please call ahead to book a time-slot, to assist us in maintaining a safe store visitor capacity in accordance with current health regulations.
Sean & Nana Isaacs