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Entrance to Greenwich Fan Museum

The Fan Museum announces major acquisition

3rd February 2020 Jacob Moss1,570 views

The Fan Museum is pleased to announce the acquisition of an exceptional late-sixteenth century ‘flag fan’, a precious survival from a time when hand held fans were exotic ornaments as opposed to commonplace accessories.

The article was probably manufactured in Venice, Italy where flag fans (in Italian, ventarola) enjoyed popular status throughout the sixteenth century. Demonstrating fine craftsmanship, both sides of the fan’s rectangular screen are richly painted with mythological subjects – one side with Cupid trapping birds, the other with a satyr (half-bestial spirit) unveiling the Goddess Venus; the subject, a seductive allegory of earthly love, was reproduced widely by artists throughout the sixteenth century, most famously by Correggio (1489-1534), whose erotic masterpiece resides in the Musée de Louvre, Paris.

The fan is on public display from 01 February 2020, forming part of The Fan Museum’s newly installed ground floor galleries.

For further information, please contact: Jacob Moss, Curator j.moss@thefanmuseum.org.uk
Images: Rhian Cox

Upcoming Events

Talking Fans > Dance Fans and the Georgian Assembly Room

Wednesday 25 May 2022 at 19.00hrs BST

In eighteenth and nineteenth century Europe, assemblies and balls were the centre of the Season where complex dances and social relationships played out. A plethora of dance manuals and sheet music were created to teach the music and social etiquette of the assembly rooms, which included the popularisation of the Country Dance fan and Quadrille fan. Join TFM Curatorial Assistant Ailsa Hendry as she explores the relationship between dance, fans, and society during this period.

Talking Fans > Art of Deception: 18th Century Trompe l’œil Fans

Wednesday 22 June 2022 at 19.00hrs BST

The French term trompe l’œil can be translated as ‘trick of the eye’ and applies to works of art which create an illusion of a real object or scene. Although its origins can be traced back to the Classical period, the trompe l’œil phenomenon is especially prevalent in the eighteenth century and is applied in varying ways to fans throughout the period. Join TFM Curator & The Arts Society Lecturer, Jacob Moss as he explores the trompe l’œil trend as seen on a variety of eighteenth century fans from the Museum’s outstanding collections.

Summer Lecture with Hélène Alexander

Wednesday 27 July 2022 at 19.00hrs BST

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The Museum is open as usual Wednesdays to Saturdays, 11h00-17h00 (last admissions at 16h30).

Please note that we will be closed from Thursday 2nd June to Saturday 4th June inclusive for the Platinum Jubilee bank holiday.

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