Madonna of Bruges
Cook Islands. 2020. Silver .999. Gilded. 3 oz. Silk finish. Size 60 x 30 mm. Mintage: 501. B. H. Mayer’s Kunstprägeanstalt, Munich.
The obverse features the portrait of Queen Elizabeth II by Ian Rank-Broadley (initials: IRB) in a circle; around it the name of the ruler, of the issuing nation and the denomination: 20 DOLLARS. Below on the left the incuse embossed serial number of the piece and the year 2020.
The reverse depicts the Madonna of Bruges three-dimensionally.
The movie The Monuments Men (2014) made the Madonna of Bruges become a symbol for millions of people that the cultural heritage of mankind must be protected even in times of war.
The Madonna of Bruges was accomplished by Michelangelo and is considered his only work that was exported abroad during his lifetime. Michelangelo sold it to the rich Bruges cloth merchants Jean and Alexandre Mouscron. Back then, Bruges was one of the most important commercial centres of Europe. Its Church of Our Lady is one of the world’s most beautiful sacral buildings. Alexandre Mouscron donated Michelangelo’s Madonna to this church. With this statue, the artist had created a completely new iconography: the Mother of God doesn’t hold the infant Christ in her arms, instead, she guides him as he makes his first attempts at walking. Her calm face reflects the tragedy of future events. Her fortitude has given many believers the strength to bear their own fate.
That is why the Madonna of Bruges became a national symbol of the Catholic Spanish Netherlands, the area we call Belgium today. For this reason, Napoleon had the Madonna of Bruges confiscated. The Hitler regime also tried to steal the statue and bring it to Germany. Why the Madonna of Bruges can still be found in its side chapel of the Church of Our Lady, this has been the theme of the movie The Monuments Men.
CIT Coin Invest turned this unique monument of faith into a coin. It is a gilded small sculpture made of three oz of silver. Thanks to smartminting technology, this coin is an object that, following the tradition of medieval portable altars, can be placed anywhere.
After Shakyamuni Buddha of 2018 and Lord Ganesha in 2019, for the first time, CIT Coin Invest dedicates one of its religious mini sculptures to an icon of the Christian faith.
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