All Creatures Great & Small
23 May – 16 September 2017
Sometimes humorous, sometimes curious, fans decorated with animal subjects occupy The Fan Museum’s elegant Georgian interiors during the summer months of 2017. Throughout history fan painters have seen fit to exploit mankind’s innate love of animals, decorating fans with all manner of beasts. All Creatures Great & Small presents a menagerie of fans dating from the 1700s onward.
Always reflecting time and place, the display includes an early eighteenth century Dutch fan delicately painted with pheasants, parrots and turkeys (at this time considered exotic, even collectable creatures).
By the beginning of the Twentieth Century fans painted with animal subjects proliferate and artists specialising in animal subjects carved out quite a niche. Perhaps the most celebrated animalier fan painter of this period is Adolph Thomasse (1850-1930), whose distinctive, anthropomorphic cats and dogs continue to enchant fan enthusiasts and collectors to this day.
Horn fan with black net 'forme ballon’ leaf showing a sequined kingfisher about to catch a dragonfly. (c. 1910) Horn fan painted with a swan. Signed A. Thomasse and Duvelleroy. (French, c. 1905) Black gauze fan, painted and shaped to resemble a moth. (French, c. 1900) Brisé fan, painted with a giraffe and figure in a landscape. (French, c. 1825) Advertising fontange fan, printed with a dog and bottle of Dry Monopole Champagne. (French, c. 1930) 'Forme ballon' fan painted with a cat, signed A, Thomasse and Duvelleroy. (French, c. 1907)
More Past Exhibitions
Since opening to the public in 1991, The Fan Museum's programme of temporary exhibitions has covered an extraordinary range of fan-related topics. Explore the archive here.
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Museum Admission Pricing
Children (age 7-16): £3.00
- Students (with vaild student card)
- Senior citizens
- Registered disabled
- English Heritage
- Friends of The Horniman
- Friends of The Victoria and Albert Museum
- Staff/Volunteers of the National Maritime Museum
National Trust Members:
50% discount on the Adult price tickets
Free Entry for…
Children under 7, Art Fund Members and London Pass Members
Free entry for disabled visitors and carers (except for groups)
Please note that the discounts listed above cannot be applied when visitors are part of a large group visit or guided tour group. Please click here for further details. Group Bookings
Please note: The Fan Museum will be closed to the public on Saturday 2nd July, but will reopen as scheduled the following Wednesday 6th July.
Additionally, the Fan Museum is unable to accept any new guided tour or private event bookings for the entirety of September 2022. The Museum will, however, remain open to the public Wednesday-Saturday, 11h00-17h00.
Thank you for your understanding.