His Excellency General the Honourable Sir Peter Cosgrove AK MC (Retd), Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia, today revealed the first Australian coins to feature the new portrait of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, signalling the impending transition to a new effigy on all Australian coinage.
Produced by the Royal Australian Mint (the Mint), the commemorative coins are the first in Australia to use the new Commonwealth effigy designed by Mr Jody Clark, an engraver from the United Kingdom’s Royal Mint.
Marking a new era of coinage in Australia, the coins also feature the familiar portrait by Mr Ian Rank-Broadley on their obverse, used on all Australian coins since 1998.
The Governor-General said the release of the new coins marks the rare progression of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s portrait on Australian coinage.
“This new effigy will be a new image for a new era —continuing to tell the story of a reign and lifetime,” he said.
“Congratulations to the Royal Australian Mint and Jody Clark—the new coins and effigy are set to become a familiar sight for years to come.”
Ross MacDiarmid, Chief Executive Officer of the Royal Australian Mint, said: “The transition to a new effigy on all Australian coinage will begin in 2019 and continue into 2020. Coins carrying previous portraits of The Queen will remain in circulation."
The special The Sixth Effigy – Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II – 2019 Proof and Uncirculated coins are available from today. Limited to a mintage of 5,000 for the proof coin and 30,000 for the uncirculated coin, order via www.eshop.ramint.gov.au or by phoning 1300 652 020.
About the design
Mr Jody Clark’s design for the Commonwealth effigy was chosen through a competition commissioned by the Royal Mint’s Advisory Committee in the United Kingdom. His original design has been used on coins in the United Kingdom since 2015.
The portrait to be used on Australian coins is the Jody Clark Commonwealth effigy, an adaption of the United Kingdom’s effigy. Both effigies show the side profile of The Queen wearing a diamond diadem crown and in keeping with tradition, The Queen continues to face right.
The most noticeable difference between the United Kingdom and Australia’s portraits is that the Commonwealth effigy includes Her Majesty’s shoulders and features the Victorian coronation necklace. On Royal Mint coinage, the portrait does not feature the Victorian coronation necklace or Her Majesty’s shoulders.
About the previous effigies
Mary Gillick, 1953
The first portrait of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II used Australian coinage was designed by Mary Gillick and was featured on Australia's pre-decimal coinage from 1953. Gillick beat 16 other artists in a competition conducted by The Royal Mint Advisory Committee. The effigy of The Queen was Gillick's first coin work and her portrait of an uncrowned queen was considered fresh and approachable.
Arnold Machin OBE RA, 1966
Arnold Machin OBE RA’s portrait of Her Majesty was the first effigy to feature on Australian decimal coinage. It was designed for the British Royal Mint and approved in 1964. This portrait was adopted for the obverse design of Australia's new coinage to be released on 14 February 1966 and preceded its first use on British coins in 1968.
Raphael Maklouf, 1985
Raphael Maklouf’s portrait models were selected as the most promising from a group of 38 by the British Royal Mint in 1982. A revised model was recommended by the Royal Mint Advisory Committee and accepted by The Queen for use on circulating United Kingdom coinage from 1 January 1985. Although not mandatory for Australia to use the same portrait as the United Kingdom, it was decided the Maklouf effigy would be adopted on Australia's coinage from 1985.
Ian Rank-Broadley, 1998
Ian Rank-Broadley’s portrait of Her Majesty was selected from the works of designers and engravers invited by the British Royal Mint in 1996. Among the three designs submitted for approval were portraits by Ian Rank-Broadley and Vladamir Gottwald. The portrait by Rank-Broadley was chosen and appeared on United Kingdom coinage in 1998. Following earlier conventions, Australia adopted this effigy on some collector coins in 1998 and generally from 1999.
Vladimir Gottwald, 2000
Vladimir Gottwald, now retired, was a member of the Royal Australian Mint's Design and Engraving Section. His portrait, designed following the British Royal Mint's invitation for a new effigy in 1996, was among the three designs submitted to Her Majesty for approval. Although Rank-Broadley's design was eventually chosen, Gottwald's design was approved to commemorate the Royal Visit in 2000. With this minting, he became the first Australian designer since Sir Edgar Bertram Mackennal KCVO RA, who sculpted the 1910-1936 effigy of King George V, to have his work on the obverse of an Australian coin.