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Pleated Fan, 19th century (CH 18472611)


Pleated Fan, 19th century (CH 18472611)



Pleated fan. Printed and hand-colored paper leaf. Obverse: figures in a landscape with country home playing the game Blind Man's Bluff. Reverse: a pastoral boating scene. Carved, drilled and gilded bone sticks. Rivet set with stone. Gilt metal bail.

Bone carving encompasses the acts of creating art, tools, and other goods by carving animal bones, antlers, and horns. It can result in the ornamentation of a bone or the creation of a distinct object. Bone carving has been practiced by a variety of world cultures, sometimes as a cheaper, and recently a legal, substitute for ivory carving. It was important in prehistoric art, with notable figures like the Swimming Reindeer, made of antler, and many of the Venus figurines.

A handheld fan, or simply a hand fan, is any broad, flat surface that is waved back and forth to create an airflow. Generally, purpose-made handheld fans are folding fans, which are shaped like a sector of a circle and made of a thin material (such as paper or feathers) mounted on slats that revolve around a pivot so that it can be closed when not in use. Hand fans were used before mechanical fans were invented. Handheld fans have been used for thousands of years, with the earliest known examples dating back to ancient Egypt and China. These early fans were made from a variety of materials, including feathers, parchment, and palm leaves, and were used for both practical and ceremonial purposes. In ancient Rome, fans were also used for both cooling and as a decorative accessories. The first handheld fans as we know them today, made from paper or other lightweight materials and mounted on sticks, were probably invented in Japan or China during the 9th or 10th century. These fans gradually spread to other parts of the world and became popular in Europe during the 17th and 18th centuries.





Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum

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textiles in the cooper hewitt smithsonian design museum
textiles in the cooper hewitt smithsonian design museum