Profile: Lapel Pins – 1974 World Championships, Munich, West Germany
Olympia-Sporthalle, a multi-purpose venue that is part of Olympiapark built for the 1972 Summer Olympiad in Munich, West Germany, was put to good use two winters later when it hosted the 1974 World Figure Skating Championships under its cavernous and undulating roof. This is the event where Dorothy Hamill famously left the ice before her free skate and burst into tears, convinced the audience was jeering her, rather than the low marks they felt were given to West German champion Gerti Schanderl. While the audience may have jeered the judges’ marks, it’s unlikely they jeered the pins that marked the 1974 World Figure Skating Championships. The main design element used is unusual—and a bit of a mystery—to say the least.
An important part of writing about the event pins featured at The Netropolitan Museum of Figure Skating Pins is seeking out historical information about a unique design, if details are not already known by The Curator. As one might imagine, many of the finer details about an event—such as logo development and branding direction—are lost to the ages, if they were ever documented in the first place. After two emails to the Deutsche Eislauf-Union (DEU) inquiring about the main design used on the 1974 Worlds pin and with no response to either message, The Curator was left to independent research and interpretation.
So what exactly is the mystery design element that appears at the center of the pin? A national or city symbol? An icon of some sort? Perhaps a folk design reimagined? A reinterpreted local landmark? A seashell or a snail (the living gastropod kind or the baked pastry kind). It could be any of those things, or something else entirely, but the multi-colored swirls in shades of green, blue–green, and purple combine to create an abstract pattern that likely is meant to represent the movement and uniformity seen in figure skating. Think the tracings of a skate blade or even a skater in a magnificent leap, which can be seen in the shape if one uses enough imagination. If someone has more information about the shape, feel free to contact The Netropolitan. New or updated information is always welcomed to help ensure what is published represents the best version of the history related to figure skating pins.
An important part of writing about the event pins featured at The Netropolitan Museum of Figure Skating Pins is seeking out historical information about a unique design, if details are not already known by The Curator.
The multi-color design dominates the main logo pin and is layered over a rich blue–green background. Along the top are the event name and year: “Weltmeisterschaften im Eiskunstlaufen 1974.” At the bottom are the location, venue, and full date: “München, Olympia-Sporthalle, 5.3. – 9.3.1974.” The lettering and borders (around the edge as well as separating the swirl design) are in gold, the color of the base metal. The pin is covered with an epoxy dome and measures approximately 1″ x 1‑1/4″ (2.5 cm x 3.2 cm). An unusual version of the logo pin, without the epoxy dome and done in similar but brighter colors, is also shown. It is likely a prototype or a sample struck for comparison.
Also issued for the event is a series of pins made for and given only to competitors and selected officials. Each incorporates the main logo to which a customized bar has been attached to denote the wearer’s role with the event. Each bar is a different color, but one in particular is different from all others: that for the attending physician. In gold, the bar features the medical caduceus and red cross symbol in an oval laurel leaf-style frame, along with the designation “Arzt.” In more than 40 years of collecting, The Curator of The Netropolitan Museum of Figure Skating Pins has not come across another event pin issued for a physician. While all the other special-designation pins measure approximately 1″ x 1‑1/2″ (2.5 cm x 3.8 cm), the physician pin measures approximately 1″ x 1‑15/16″ (2.5 cm x 4.9 cm).
The pins in the gallery are:
- “ISU” (ISU representative)
- “Teilnehmer” (“Competitor”)
- “Trainer” (“Coach”)
- “Preisrichter” (“Judge”)
- “Organisation” (“Organizing Committee”)
- “Presse” (“Press”)
- “TV–Radio” (broadcast media representative)
- “Arzt” (“Doctor”)
Enjoy this week’s figure skating pins blog: 1974 World Figure Skating Championships Pins: It’s a Mystery. And be sure to read the museum story for more information about figure skating pins.
Pins Gallery: 1974 World Figure Skating Championships
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