Last Updated on January 3, 2023 by Netropolitan Museum
Profile: Lapel Pins – 1983 Canadian Figure Skating Championships, Montréal, Canada
Figure skating pins take all shapes and sizes and incorporate varying kinds of images and artwork, from symbols associated with the sport itself to those associated with the country or city hosting an event. Perhaps nowhere is this better represented than in the pins made to commemorate the 1983 Canadian Figure Skating Championships (scroll down in the link to see the Canadians report). It is said that the unusual and irregularly shaped logo pin represents the St. Lawrence River, which flows prominently through Montréal, site of the 1983 Canadians.
The St. Lawrence isn’t the only Canadian symbol making an appearance on the pin, however. In silver and “flowing” out of the blue river are two additional, highly recognizable symbols, one national and one provincial: the maple leaf and the fleur-de-lis, which appears on the flag of Quebec. And to round things out with another local tie-in, the symbol used on the Montréal logo flag—intersecting shapes that form the letters “VM,” for “Ville de Montréal”—appears in the upper, curled portion. So three national or local symbols adorn the 1983 Canadians pin, which, incidentally, is another example of a figure skating pin that does not carry any traditional depiction of the sport, such as a skater, skate blade, boot, and so on.
The main logo pin, predominately in blue, mimics the St. Lawrence, with the drops at the base of the pin symbolizing a wave crashing upon the river bank.
At the base of the pin, where water drops symbolize a wave crashing upon the river bank, is the event year: “1983.” Snaking along the pin and following the path of the river is the event name, in both French (the official language of Quebec province) and English: “Les Canadiens Championnat / The Canadians Championship.” On a silver-color base metal, the pin measures approximately 1‑1/4″ x 1″ (3.2 cm x 2.5 cm).
Also issued for the event was a larger version of the logo pin, identical in all respects except size, and given only to competitors and selected officials. It measures approximately 2″ x 1‑1/2″ (5 cm x 3.8 cm) and was acquired from the talented and avant-garde Canadian competitor Gary Beacom. After winning the compulsory figures portion of the event, Beacom ultimately went on to place second overall at the 1983 Canadians. A unique pin from a unique skater.
Enjoy this week’s figure skating pins blog: 1983 Canadian Figure Skating Championships Pins: Flowing Like a River. And be sure to read the museum story for more information about figure skating pins.
Pins Gallery: 1983 Canadian Figure Skating Championships
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