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Need for Beads

Smithies Create

Grasshopper By Delia Carmen. Photographed by Jeff Witkavitch


Published September 25, 2023

These aren’t your grandmother’s brooches (though we’re sure those are lovely too!). Heather Kahn ’00 is the founder of the Museum of Beadwork in Portland, Maine—a space dedicated to showcasing exquisite examples of beaded jewelry, clothing, sculpture, accessories, tapestries, and other items from around the globe, such as Grasshopper by Delia Carmen Cepoi. According to Kahn, the focus is on “how beadwork reveals interconnections between people and cultures through trade, human migration, and the influence of one culture on another.” To further the art of beading, the museum also hosts workshops, classes, and events, and features work by contemporary artists. After delays due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the museum celebrated its grand opening in August.


Heather Kahn ’00

Huginn By Betsy Youngquist. Photographed by Rick Lucas