Russian artist Wassily Kandinsky, the subject of a Google Doodle on Dec. 16, his 148th birthday, is
also honored on commemorative coins.
The Monnaie de Paris in 2011 featured Kandinsky on the
second-to-last issue in that mint's two-year Painters series.
Kandinsky was an art theorist as well as painter, and is credited
with painting the first purely abstract works.
Born in Moscow, Kandinsky spent his childhood in Odessa. He enrolled
at the University of Moscow and chose to study law and economics.
Though successful at his profession, Kandinksy began painting studies
(life-drawing, sketching and anatomy) at the age of 30.
After World War I, Kandinsky moved to France where he lived for the
remainder of his life, becoming a French citizen in 1939.
He died at Neuilly-sur-Seine in 1944.
The French Mint issued three rectangular coins honoring Kandinsky,
all showing his 1923 work titled Composition VIII as the common obverse.
The Proof .900 fine silver €10 and the Proof .920 fine gold €100
coin both measure 21 millimeters tall and 30 millimeters wide.
The silver coin weighs 22.2 grams and its mintage is limited to
The gold €100 coin weighs 17 grams; its mintage is limited to 500 pieces.
The Proof .999 fine gold €500 coin measures 37 millimeters tall and
53 millimeters wide. Its mintage was limited to 99 pieces, perhaps
making it as rare as a Kandinsky painting.
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