Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC

10 April – 10 June 2008

This exhibition Classically Greek: Coins and Banknotes from Antiquity to today was co- organised by the National Bank of Greece, the Benaki Museum and the KIKPE, in collaboration with the National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution.

The culture, the history and the mythology of ancient Greece are reflected in the iconography of the ancient coins and the modern banknotes. These mediums of everyday transactions preserve memories and carry messages for the political and economic powers which shaped the ancient and the modern Greece.

The banknotes and the bronze coins which were presented in the exhibition belong to the banknote collections of the National Bank of Greece and of the KIKPE, as well as to the collection of ancient copper coins owned by the KIKPE foundation.

The exhibition was structured in the following units:

  • From initial design to printed bank note
  • Antiquities and Greek bank notes
  • Ancient Greek coins on bank notes
  • Gods on Greek bank notes
  • Bronze coins and their iconography
  • The Panathenaic procession: scenes from the Parthenon frieze
  • Elements of bank note design
  • Chalkoi (copper/bronze coins) of the ancient Greek world
  • Security marks within a classical design

Exhibition organisation: National Bank of Greece – KIKPE – Benaki Museum – Smithsonian Institution
Location: Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC, USA
Duration: 10 April – 10 June 2008
The temporary exhibition was curated by the Smithsonian Institution.