Bundesbank opens new Money Museum

16.12.2016 | Deutsche Bundesbank DE

The Bundesbank opens its extensively redesigned Money Museum on 17 December 2016. Following elaborate construction and modernisation work, the museum presents itself to the public as an interactive learning venue. "We want to impart meaningful information about money, its history and the tasks facing modern central banks," Bundesbank President Jens Weidmann explained at the opening ceremony for the new Money Museum. The exhibition made reference to visitors' day-to-day experiences in order to make abstract terms such as price stability or financial stability easier to grasp. "The museum brings monetary policy topics to life based on everyday experiences," Weidmann remarked. The aim was to convey the importance of stable money, as having a stability-conscious population was a key precondition for a successful monetary policy, he said.

Bar of gold to feel and touch and 360° cinema

The multimedia exhibition takes visitors on a tour of the four themed areas: "cash", "book money", "monetary policy" and "global money" where they learn about central banks' work, the importance of stable prices and how payment transactions work based on everyday situations such as a replica supermarket or a model bank branch. Visitors can, moreover, look at every subject from a present-day or a historical perspective.

"One of the new Money Museum's highlights is a 12.5 kg bar of gold from the Bundesbank's vaults, which visitors are allowed to touch and feel," Executive Board member Carl-Ludwig Thiele stressed. Another special feature is the 360° cinema where visitors can watch films taking them on a journey around the world to see unusual money locations. A further exhibition highlight is the money cabinet, which displays outstanding museum coins to document the history of money from the very beginnings of coin minting to the present day. The new museum uses a wide variety of media – texts, images, videos and audio elements – to target visitors of all ages. Around 60 media stations convey money-related information in an entertaining manner (quizzes, games of memory and puzzles), but also provide more in-depth information. Individual displays at children's eye level cater to the museum's youngest visitors. 

Expanded exhibition area

To allow all topics to be covered properly, the exhibition area was expanded to 1,000 square metres and an additional space created for special exhibitions. The first special exhibition, "60 years of the Bundesbank in the media", will be opened in the summer of the anniversary year 2017. "The Money Museum will be the window into the Bundesbank in Frankfurt," Executive Board member Johannes Beermann remarked. The cafeteria has also been enlarged and redesigned. The Bundesbank expects the museum to attract significantly more visitors than before it was closed on 1 September 2014. In the past, the Money Museum, which was opened in 1999, has had roughly 40,000 visitors a year, including many schoolchildren. The building was enlarged and redesigned by the architects office KSP Jürgen Engel in Frankfurt am Main, while the Stuttgart-based firm Milla & Partner was responsible for designing and implementing the exhibition layout.

Lectures, guided tours, workshops and discovery tours

Besides the exhibition itself, the Money Museum offers lectures, specially themed guided tours, workshops and discovery tours for children and youngsters as well as seminars for teachers. This makes it central to the Bundesbank's economic education activities. Detailed information on lecture topics, dates, and times and how to register are available at http://www.geldmuseum.de. The museum is located at the Bundesbank’s Central Office, Wilhelm-Epstein-Strasse 14, 60431 Frankfurt am Main. Admission is free. The exhibition is open from 9 am to 5 pm on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays and from 9 am to 8 pm on Wednesdays.