Norway unveils designs of new “The Sea” note family


On 7 October 2014, Norges Bank (Norway’s central bank) presented the results of its ongoing banknote competition. The new theme will be “The Sea.” A press release revealed the proposed design for the 100-kroner note. The first notes from the new series are not expected to be issued until 2017 at the earliest.

Subsequently on 3 February 2015, Norges Bank unveiled the designs for the remaining denominations. The fronts of the notes will be developed on the basis of the proposal from The Metric System and Terje Tønnessen. The backs of the notes will be the pixel motifs submitted by Snøhetta Design. Please note that the designs of the finished notes may deviate somewhat from the competition proposals as shown below.

On each obverse side, the designer has placed a signal flag from the maritime alphabet. The flags represent the letters N, O, R, G and E and therefore spell either NORGE or NOREG (not in order by denomination).

The cubic patterns on the reverse side represent pixels and mosaics. The patterns depict the coast, the horizon and the motif. The organic pattern is an abstraction of the sea. Both the cubic and organic patterns follow the Beaufort scale as an expression of wind speed. This affects the waves in the sea. On the lowest denomination note, the wind is light, and there are short cubic forms and long, gentle waves in the organic pattern. On the highest denomination note, the wind is strong and creates elongated rectangular forms and short waves.

Motif: Utvær Lighthouse in Sogn og Fjordane, Norway’s westernmost point. Signal flag: Letter R.

Pixel motif on the horizon: Lighthouse on the horizon. Cubic pattern: 1.6 metres per second (m/s). Organic pattern: Light breeze, gentle waves.

Motif: The Gokstad ship from the 800s, with the Norwegian-designed X-Bow hull developed by Ulstein Design & Solutions AS in the background. Signal flag: Letter O.

Pixel motif on the horizon: Cargo ship. Cubic pattern: 3.4 m/s. Organic pattern: Gentle breeze. Crests begin to break.

Motif: Cod and herring. The background drawing shows mesh from a fishing net. Signal flag: Letter N.

Pixel motif on the horizon: Fishing boat. Cubic pattern: 8 m/s. Organic pattern: Fresh breeze. Wave heights of 1 m or more.

Colin Archer, boat design. Anders Beer Wilse, photographer. Linn Krogh Hansen, photographer.

Pixel motif on the horizon: Oil platform. Cubic pattern: 13.9 m/s. Organic pattern: High wind. Sea heaps up, white foam from breaking waves.

Motif: Wave in the sea. Signal flag: Letter E.

Pixel motif: Horizon. Cubic pattern: 20.8 m/s. Organic pattern: Strong gale. High waves. Dense foam is blown along wind direction.

Courtesy of Josema Peso.

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