Published: 01.03.2016

Working together with several partners, Latvijas Banka announces the annual public survey Coin of the Year 2015, the central event of Latvia's coin art, which will last from 1 March until 22 March 2016. Latvijas Banka is inviting the public to express their views as to which coin of the six collector coins issued in 2015 they favour due to its artistic presentation, emotional attractiveness, originality and featured subject-matter. The survey itself and the awards ceremony planned for 28 April are simultaneously an acknowledgement of the artists' attainment in coin art and an attestation that the featured themes and artistic solutions are favoured by the public.

In 2015, six collector coins dedicated to Latvia's history, culture and personalities were issued. They are "150 Years of Firefighting in Latvia" (video), "500 Years of the Riga Castle" (video), "Rainis and Aspazija" (video), "Valse Mélancolique" (video), "Fairy Tale Coin I. Five Cats" (video) and "500 Years of Livonian Ferding" (video). All coins can be viewed in the survey announcement video. The video materials can be used by the media without restriction.  

The public survey Coin of the Year 2015 is organised in partnership with the Latvian National Museum of Art (LNMA), company Tilde and the Centre for Culture Information Systems. Informative support is provided by the Art Academy of Latvia, University of Latvia, University of Liepāja, Turība University, BA School of Business and Finance, Rēzekne Higher Education Institution, Ventspils University College, Riga International College of Economics and Business Administration, University of Daugavpils, Vidzeme College of Higher Education and SJSC Latvijas Pasts.

A panel of LNMA experts will determine and present a special award for the most artistic coin. The panel comprises Māra Lāce, Director of the LNMA, Inese Baranovska, Head of the Museum of Decorative Arts and Design, and Elita Ansone, Head of the Collection and Research Department of the Arsenāls exhibition hall. Special awards will also be presented by Tilde, the Centre for Culture Information Systems and Latvia's coin collector community.

Online voting will be open on Latvijas Banka website at and, while voting forms can be filled out in Latvijas Banka premises at K. Valdemāra iela 2A and K. Valdemāra iela 1B in Riga as well as in the Liepāja Branch at Teātra iela 3.

Voting forms will also be available from a number of cultural institutions and coin trade points (the Museum of the History of Riga and Navigation, exhibition halls of the Latvian National History Museum at Brīvības bulvāris 32 in Riga, the Museum of Decorative Arts and Design, the exhibition hall Arsenālsin Riga, central regional libraries of Kuldīga, Ventspils, Jelgava, Preiļi, Daugavpils, Valmiera, Riga and the other regional centres, bookshops of Valters and Rapa Publishers at Aspazijas bulvāris 24 in Riga and Domina Trade Centre as well as such coin trade points as JSCs TAVEX, IMIS, Silver Trust, E-Lats, Money Express Credit and Rīga Numis).

In the voting period, Latvijas Banka in cooperation with Tilde and the Centre for Culture Information Systems invites participants in the vote to test their knowledge about coin art and play the erudition game "Inquire About Cultural Symbols on Latvian Coins" in the Internet portal.

The survey results will be announced during the awards ceremony on 28 April and published on Latvijas Banka website within two days. During the event, a lottery will be held, with 30 collector coins issued in 2015 offered as prizes for the winners.

In 2014, the Coin of the Year Award went to "Baroque of Courland" (graphic design by Laimonis Šēnbergs and plaster model by Ligita Franckeviča), with around 17 000 people having taken part in the voting.

Since 2004 when Latvijas Banka launched the survey, the following coins have won the Coin of the Year Award: "Coin of Time", "Baron Munchausen", "Coin of Digits", "Coin of Time II", "Happy Coin", "Coin of Water", "Amber Coin", "Fog Mists the Pane", "Richard Zariņš' Silver 5 Lats Coin" and "Baby Coin".  

Since 1995, Latvijas Banka has issued 98 lats collector coins and 12 euro collector coins, with over 40 Latvian artists having participated in designing them.

The Latvian coins have earned high international respect and won numerous prestigious awards; in 2010, "Coin of Latvia" was bestowed the International Coin of the Year honours and topped the World's Best Gold category. Most recently, the collector coin "Baltic Way", issued by Latvijas Banka in 2014 to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Baltic Way, was recognised as the World's Best Contemporary Event Coin.