The Perth Mint releases a stunning Asian-iinspired Koi fish silver coin crushing the scales at two kilograms

An extremely rare format for the modern collectible coin market, two kilos is quite a beast compared to the usual 1–2 ounces, that make up the vast bulk of the market today. However, the Perth Mint likes to dabble, and for the last few years we’ve seen an annual release, antique-finished, and with some serious levels of high-relief. Much of this stems from the fact this is effectively a piedfort one-kilo coin, with all that extra weight going to the thickness of the coin, rather than the diameter.

The range started, as many Perth Mint ideas do, from the producer’s extensive bullion range. In 2018, we got a Koala themed design, followed by a Kangaroo in 2019, and a Kookaburra in 2020. Fortunately, the following year things started to get a little more original, with a terrific Great Barrier Reef design. The originality continued last year, with a nice Asian Dragon & Tiger design, although with less relief than previous issues.

That 2022 issue was also a little step backwards, in our view, reintroducing a wide border circling the main artwork, which was something missing from the 2021 coin for the first time. For 2023, we’re pleased to see the coin’s design reach out to the rim in all directions, and artist Natasha Muhl has taken full advantage of that, and the concave nature of the strike.

The Koi is a staple of Asian culture, particularly Japanese (just ask any tattoo artist), but Muhl has chosen to eschew that highly stylised look for a more natural depiction, showing us three of these popular fish in a pond setting, complete with flora. This would be a very intense coin if it were coloured, but luckily, the mint has stuck with the elegant antiquing again. The Koi themselves are a little stylised, but overall, a pleasingly natural scene, with some superb relief. Very attractive.

The obverse is the uncouped effigy of Queen Elizabeth II, along with the memorial inscription of ‘1952-2022’. As you’d expect for this type of coin, the presentation is lush, and the solid acrylic block display frame a perfect accompaniment. I have to say, it’s my favourite of the range to date, but like the others, the near $4,300 AUD price tag means it won’t be joining my collection any time soon. For those with deeper pockets, the mintage of 200 should keep it pretty exclusive, and it’s certainly worthy of attention. Available from today.

DENOMINATION $60 AUD (Australia)
COMPOSITION 2000.2 g of 0.9999 silver
FINISH Antique