The art in your pocket: Devlin’s designs to be explored in new exhibition at the Mint


For the first time the masterly work of Stuart Devlin AO, the designer of Australia’s much-loved decimal coins and internationally renowned silversmith, goldsmith and jeweller, will be showcased to the public in an exhibition entitled The Designer with the Midas Touch at the Royal Australian Mint (the Mint).

With exclusive pieces from the Devlin family’s personal collection, Devlin’s creative genius will be displayed in The Designer with the Midas Touch showcasing why he is regarded as the most prolific designer of his time, in turn being appointed as the goldsmith and jeweller to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

Apart from designing Australia’s decimal coins released into circulation in 1966, Devlin has designed coins for 30 other countries, including the United Kingdom and Singapore.

“I like the fact that millions of people around the world carry my work in their pockets.” said Mr Devlin

Federal Small Business Minister Michael McCormack, who has responsibility for the Mint, said the exhibition will focus on an important part of the Mint’s history in the lives of all Australians.

“That immortal song to the tune of Click Goes The Shears is part of Australian folklore and underlines what a significant role the Royal Australian Mint plays in our everyday. Half a century later, it is a fitting time to pause and reflect on the person whose work is forever etched in almost every facet of Australian life and I know this exhibition will do just that,” Mr McCormack said.

Mint CEO Mr Ross MacDiarmid said that coins are only one part of Devlin’s extraordinary career that the Mint will exhibit.

“Many honours have come his way, notably his appointment as Goldsmith and Jeweller to the Queen in 1982. After designing many of the awards within the Australian honours system, he was himself appointed an AO in 1988.” said Mr MacDiarmid

From the ubiquitous Wiltshire Staysharp Knife MK1 and scabbard to ground-breaking designs for coffee services, furniture, tableware and candelabrum that lit up dining rooms around the world, Devlin’s extraordinary work will be explored in the exhibition, aiming to restore richness and romance to peoples’ lives.

The Designer with the Midas Touch will be free to visit and open to the public from 16 December 2016.

For further information on Stuart Devlin’s career, visit

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Media contact: Elyse Moore, Royal Australian Mint – (02) 6202 6975, 0466 562 598 or

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