Sunday, September 29, 2013

Banknote and Postage Stamp Museum お札と切手の博物館

Today I spent about some time at the Banknote and Postage Stamp Museum, which is part of the National Printing Bureau, and close to Oji Station.

I love off-beat museums such as this one- it took a little under an hour to look at all the cases and objects, and to read a selection of the labels. The museum had a variety of currency and stamps from around the world, and a section on the history of both stamps and currency. My favorite items in the historical exhibits were the 18th century Japanese banknotes, which were beautiful monochromatic woodblock prints. I also enjoyed the section on unusual currency from around the globe- notes from nations in inflationary times worth billions, an error on a Canadian note that gave the illusion of a devil figure in Queen Elizabeth's hair, notes from post-revolutionary Iran that stamped out symbols of the previous regime. 

The first floor exhibits were more interactive in nature, and included two small working models of the manufacturing process of currency and stamps. 

Unfortunately, photos were not allowed inside the museum, and there was no gift shop, but I did make a stamp sheet on my way out.

And since there were no photos inside, I'll include this lovely view of the flowers at the park across the street from the museum. The website for the Printing Bureau does have some photos of the museum, which you can see here.

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