The Akan peoples (West Africa), Ashanti in particular, used gold as a means of payment until colonial currencies were imposed at the beginning of the 20th century. Kept in powder in small boxes, this gold was weighed with scales and weights. Over 2,000 of these weights are kept in the collection of Monnaie de Paris, thanks to various legacies and donations, the last of which occurred in 2018.
Through a selection, the 11 Conti Museum explains the origins and unexpected originalities of these small bronze figures that immerse us in the daily life of this region of Africa. The visitor will discover that beyond the gold weighed to trade, the weights say much more than a simple price! This universe - far removed from Western metrology - is recontextualized within the rich Akan culture and the relations which linked Africa - and in particular the Gold Coast - with the West.