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Read My Pins: The Madeleine Albright Collection


Client: Denver Art Museum
Dates on view: April 15 – June 17, 2012
Exhibition total area: 5,000 sq. ft.
Checklist: Over 200 pieces of jewelry on 50 panels


(From the exhibition announcement) Shortly after becoming a diplomat, Madeleine Albright discovered the power of jewelry to convey a foreign policy message.  Before long, she began selecting appropriate pins to wear to particular meetings, visually expressing her high hopes, determination, impatience, or warm feelings.  The brooches soon became her diplomatic signature.

The exhibition consists of over 200 pins that Secretary Albright wore before, during and after her years of public service.  They include examples of fine art, but most are of the costume variety.  Many are by anonymous designers and were selected for the signals they send and the spirit they convey. Sometimes demure and understated, sometimes outlandish and outspoken, these pins were used as gentle implements of statecraft. Their stories and messages reflect the Secretary’s sense of humor and her humanity, and are shared here for the first time in a public museum setting.

Organized by the Museum of Arts and Design in New York, Read My Pins has traveled to museums, colleges and libraries around the country, and is accompanied by a fully-illustrated catalog.



Exhibition Development
Exhibition Design
Graphic Design
Casework design


All photographs courtesy of Denver Art Museum | Jeff Wells