Bitter Grounds Magazine

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New Caledonia stamps – ohh mushrooms

Written by catpaw

August 05, 2021

The 2021 issues for New Caledonia stamps may be small in number, but they are interesting. When I started this article, I wasn’t sure what the introduction would look like. To be honest, the number of stamps is so small, I was worried this would be a bit of a hit and run article. And then I spotted the Mahuteau artwork. 

“Mail art should be the mainstay of artistic classes up to the baccalaureate!” Jean-Jacques Mahuteau 2020

Artist Jean-Jacques Mahuteau returned with a May release celebrating 50 years of nature conservation, a topic dear to his heart. He began his career in the 70s, designing album covers & working with Rock & Folk magazine. In 1981, he moved to New Caledonia and in 2008 began designing stamps for their post office.

He has created many memorable stamps for both New Caledonia & Wallis & Fortuna, including the beautifully crafted Lunar New Year stamps for Wallis & Fortuna. (See his latest  2021 Year of the Ox issue for Wallis & Fortuna.)  He was interviewed by La Monde last year (2020) and you can read his thoughts on stamp artwork here Jean-Jacques Mahuteau: “Mail art should be the mainstay of artistic classes up to the baccalaureate!” ( Once you begin reading his ideas about philatelic art, you’ll be hooked on his designs. 

Award Winning Nature Conservation Stamps

His 2018 Pollinators won the 69th Grand Prix de l’Art Philatélique with a sheet that reflects his passion for nature conservation. He beat out the great engraver Pierre Albuisson’s TAAF stamp Shells of Terre Adélie for the honour, and that is no mean feat. (You can read a little more about Albuisson here So, you like cephalopods – an octopus stamp).

“My main anxiety for a long time has been centered around the abuse of our small planet, which is accelerating”, Jean-Jacques Mahuteau, La Monde July 30, 2020

New Caledonia polllinators sheet of stamps from 2018. Shows bees, a bird, bats flying and a moth

He also wrote Carnet de Voyage for the Oct. 2019 Timbres Magazine. The article featured both his stamps & water colours. If you can dig up the edition, its worth holding onto. 

Odds ‘n Ends

New Caledonia stamps turned into a wonderful adventure of nature, artwork & collectable postmarks. The year started, as usual, with the Kagu styled birds by Sébastien Werling. The FDC & cancel allows the yearly stamps to stand out.  The bird is quite endearing for some reason. Maybe it’s the simplicity of the design and bold colours that keep me coming back. 

Enjoy the journey to New Caledonia. And apologies if there are spacing errors I’ve missed. My spacebar is not working properly. If you spot one, drop me a comment. 

New Caledonia stamps for March

Definitives – Kagu

  Kagu Definitive single stamp showing a stylized bird on a red background Kagu Definitive single stamp showing a stylized bird on a dark blue background

Kagu Definitive FDC with both stamps ad a stylized illustration of a bird on the cover

2 stamps, FDC, cancel

Designer: Sébastien Werling

Release date: March 22, 2021



 New Caledonia - stamps 2021 mushrooms - 3 mushrooms that are spikey in shape


New Caledonia FDC showing 2 mushroom stamps & a photo of a green mushroom on the cover

2 stamps, sheet of 10, FDC, cancel

Photographer: C. Laudereau

Release date: May 4, 2021

50 years of the New Caledonian nature conservation association

50 years of the New Caledonian nature conservation association 

50 years of the New Caledonian nature conservation association 

New Caledonia 50 years of nature conservation FDC

1 stamp, sheets of 10, FDC, cancel

Designer: Jean-Jacques Mahuteau 

Release date: May 6, 2021


Tabou lighthouse

New Caledonia stamp - Tabou lighthouse 

New Caledonia sheet - Tabou lighthouse

1 stamp, sheets of 10

Designer: Jean-Jacques Mahuteau 

Release date: Aug. 18, 2021


New ranges of coins

New ranges of coins

1 stamp

Photographer: Exotic Gardens

Release date: September 2, 2021

If you enjoyed New Caledonia, you’ll love:  

2021 stamps for French Polynesia

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