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  • The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new lands but seeing with new eyes. Marcel Proust
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Visit the Smile Face Museum

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This collection of grinning ephemera has grown from basement to Brooklyn.

Founded in 1992 by collector Mark Sachs, the kitschy assortment of knick-knacks contains just about every type of object one might imagine a smiley face could be pasted on. Originally contained in the basement of Sachs’ Maryland home, the museum has continued to grow over the decades and is often considered a work of modern art in and of itself. Across over 1,000 items in the collection, the simple, yet instantly recognizable yellow smile beams out at visitors from oven mitts, clocks, toys, clothes, deli bags, rugs, and posters. The collection is so wide-ranging as to seem uncurated, which is to be expected when the subject of your museum is as ubiquitous and easily replicated as the “Smiley.”

While the Smile Face Museum has enjoyed its home in Sachs’ basement for decades, the collection has grown a deal in both size and popularity since its establishment in the mid-90’s. In 2014 the museum will be creating a temporary installation in Brooklyn, New York before it is placed back in storage. While in Brooklyn, the collection will be catalogued for posting to the internet so that it can continue to put smiles on faces for years to come.