Over the next week, stamp collectors in Singapore have a chance to check out rare stamps, meet fellow collectors and stamp designers, and show off their collections.
The World Stamp Exhibition, hosted by the Association of Singapore Philatelists and sponsored by SingPost, takes place at Marina Bay Sands from today till Wednesday. Admission is free.
The decennial exhibition, which Singapore hosted in 1995 for the first time, is one of the world’s best and most prestigious philatelic conventions.
The main highlight is a stamp collecting competition where philatelists from all over the world showcase their prized collections. The judging panel consists of professional and well-known philatelists from various countries, including Singaporeans Tay Peng Hian and Koh Seow Chuan, who will head the panel.
Over at the Court of Honour, past winners who have attained high accolades in the philatelic world will exhibit pieces valued at more than $10 million in total.
BOOK IT / SINGAPORE 2015 WORLD STAMP EXHIBITION
WHERE: Sands Expo and Convention Centre, 10 Bayfront Avenue
WHEN: Till Wednesday, 10am to 6pm (weekday), 10am to 8pm (weekend), 10am to 4pm (Wednesday)
Some rare pieces include a one of- a-kind Mauritius Post Office Printing Plate dating back to 1947 and an envelope featuring 10 Queen’s Head stamps from 1854 India, which is the most number of stamps recorded on a single envelope at that time.
There will also be an auction of rare stamps, organised by London auction house Spink. Bidding prices start from $120 and go up to $100,000 for a rare Straits Settlements 1906-12 Watermark Multiple Crown CA Issued Stamp, of which only nine are collected in mint condition.
Collectors can also buy stamps – ranging from cheap ones for practical use to limited-edition prints from as far as Gibraltar and Belarus – from the more than 100 commercial exhibitor booths.
Children can take part in activities organised by the Singapore Philatelic Museum, such as a scavenger hunt and storytelling sessions on the historical and personal significance of some stamps. There will also be a National Stamp Collecting competition for student collectors, judged by volunteers from the Singapore Stamp Club.
Ms Lucille Yap, 54, senior curator at the Singapore Philatelic Museum, said: “There’s an educational aspect to philately. Many stamp collectors are like historians and can tell you the story behind a stamp’s origin and its value.”
Visitors can also meet the people behind the design of some Singapore stamps. MediaCorp artist Edmund Chen had designed stamps featuring otters and pandas in 2010 and 2012 for SingPost and will be at the exhibition tomorrow.
Other designers include Mr Leo Teck Chong, founder of advertising agency O’meteor Creative Artel, who came up with SingPost’s annual Chinese Zodiac series of stamps from 2009 to this year, and book illustrator Ivory Seah, who was commissioned by SingPost to design stamps in collaboration with France to mark 50 years of diplomatic relations.
Mr Charles Loong, 40, a stockbroker and member of the Singapore Stamp Club, will be attending the exhibition.
“I’m looking forward to catching up with old friends and meeting new collectors,”he says. “I specialise in collecting Chinese stamps, so I’m excited about this set of four China Red Revenue stamps that will be displayed at the Court of Honour."