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Money Talks Exhibit at the Ashmolean

Published June 14, 2024 | 2 min read

By Sydney Stewart

From August 9 to January 5, a new exhibition at the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford, England, will examine the complex relationship between art, money, and society. The exhibit, Money Talks: Art, Society & Power, will feature more than 100 numismatic-related objects from around the world. The exhibit will include coins, bank notes, art, cryptocurrency, and non-fungible tokens (NFTs).

The exhibition opens by examining the images of rulers on currency. On display are rare Edward VIII patterns and notes featuring Queen Elizabeth II. Further in the exhibit, visitors can view Franz Matsch’s, Gustav Klimt’s, and Koloman Moser’s bank-note artwork and 1970s German artist Joseph Beuys’s defaced paper money. Other art in this section includes Banksy’s 2004 Di-faced Tenner. On the note, Banksy replaced Elizabeth II’s bust with Princess Diana’s face. Susan Stockwell’s 2010 sculpture Money Dress, made entirely of world bank notes, is also on display. Money Talks concludes by considering the future of money, cryptocurrency, and NFTs. This section will feature a new NFT commissioned by the Ashmolean.

“Although money is not usually considered an artform, the two have interacted and informed each other in many ways,” says Dr. Xa Sturgis, the director of the Ashmolean Museum. “Money Talks challenges our views of how money comes to be in our pockets and what happens to it and with it.”

Susan Stockwell’s sculpture Money Dress. (Photo: Susan Stockwell and Patrick Heide)
Koloman Moser’s draft artwork for the 1902 50-crown note. (Photo: Money Museum of the Austrian National Bank)
Joseph Beuys’s Kunst=Kapital. (Photo: Haupt Collection)