|Coin||Silver Three Ounces 2020 Spiritual Art - Madonna of Bruges|
The Cook Islands, a sovereign state in free association with New Zealand, uses two official legal tender currencies. The New Zealand Dollar circulates in parallel with the local Cook Islands Dollar; at the same time, the government also authorises many legal tender coins in the Cook Islands Dollar currency for collector's purposes.
Collector coins are dedicated to historical or general popular culture themes not related to the country itself. Many of them are in standard bullion sizes, including the large three ounces of silver format - such as this coin.
The Mint says about it:
Coins are often referred to as miniature pieces of art in metal. This release in the "Spiritual Art" collection, called Madonna of Bruges certainly lives up to that description! Struck in 3 ounces of silver and then covered with gold, this piece of art pays tribute to Michelangelo’s sculpture of Mary and Jesus. Unlike many other sculptures and paintings that show her looking down upon an Infant, this sculpture is unique as it shows Mary showing sorrow for the future that Jesus must bear. This moving sculpture is the Michelangelo’s only work that was removed outside of Italy during his life. In fact, it has been moved multiple times and the recovery efforts after WWII were a subject in a big budget Hollywood film called "The Monuments Men".
Whereas the original was sculpted out of one solid piece of marble, this piece of art has been minted out of 3 ounces of precious metal.
The obverse of the coin shows the crowned mature head of Queen Elizabeth II facing right (her effigy known as the "Fourth Portrait"). The Queen wears the "Girls of Great Britain and Ireland" diamond tiara, a wedding gift from Queen Mary (Her Majesty's grandmother) in 1947 - which she also has on the Machin and the Gottwald portraits.
In small letters below the head, the artist's initials IRB (for Ian Rank-Broadley).
Around the effigy is the monarch's legend, the date of issue and the value: ELIZABETH II COOK ISLANDS 20 DOLLARS 2020.
Below the portrait, the unique serial number of the coin in the format [number]/501, below which the date of issue 2020.
The reverse depicts, in very high relief, Michelangelo’s sculpture of Mary and Jesus, known as the Madonna of Bruges.
Finish: proof, smartminting (Ultra High Relief), special shape, gold plated.
CIT Item ID: 29197
Coins in the Spiritual Art series include:
- 3 oz Gilded Silver, Mongolia, Shakyamuni Buddha, 2018
- 3 oz Gilded Silver, Cook Islands, Lord Ganesha, 2019
- 3 oz Gilded Silver, Cook Islands, The Madonna of Bruges, 2020
- 3 oz Gilded Silver, Cook Islands, Ravana - King of Demons, 2021
- 3 oz Gilded Silver, Cook Islands, Zeus - Father of the Gods, 2022