Length cm 22,7
Spread cm 41
14 Sticks plus 2 cut of head ( in an old restoration)
A very rare fan called DOUBLE-ENTENTE because it can be opened in both verses, it represents four different scenes. We know very little about the provenience of this kind of fan, generally it can be placed in the Germanic area of the last quarter of the XVII century. Particularly this model of fan because of its style and delicacy, it can be attributed to a Venetian painter or to a German one educated in Italy in the second half of the XVII century. The page, formed by different leaves in kid skin, in the verse is covered by yellow silk painted in distemper and in the retrothe bottom is left natural with a scene painted “at blood” and the other maybe it was originally a golden leaf, now oxidized.
surrounded by a painted in distemper flowers running according to the typical stile of the XVII century, 2 winged amorino try to pierce the hearth hold in the right hand of a third amorino, immobile on a pedestal, helped by the winds represented symbolically as blowing faces. The flowers are recognizable: below from the center to the right: 1) rosebay, 2) blue campanula, 3) pink rose , 4) double tulip, 5) a shoot with 4 unknown yellow berries, 6) a light blue flower, 7) red rosebay and so on. All the flowers are linked, in the symbolism and in the allegory, to Love but not to Passion.
The “blood” painting on kid skin puts at the center the back of a captain talking to a scantily dressed lady who drags with a ribbon the bow of a boat with a man-like figure-head. At the left extremity the river allegory, the figure of a bearded man on the back, and the presence of a wolf’s head could make us think of an episode of “Fasti” ( book IV, month of April, dedicated to Venus. On the 3rd and 4th April they celebrated the Megalesie Festivities for Cibele) Ovidio reports the episode even from Svetonio of the vestal Claudia Quinta who, accused of infidelity, recommends herself to Magna Mater in order to demonstrate her chastity. The boat transporting the statue of Cibele from Frigia is stranded at the mouth of Tevere, but alone and without efforts Claudia Quinta refloats the boat. This act of strength shows the Goddess benevolence towards her vestal. Few represented iconography- we remember the painting of Benvenuto Tisi called the Garofano, exposed in the National gallery of ancient art of Palace Barberini in Rome. The general theme of the first page is Rome, that one of the page of erotic can be synthetized in Amor, the secret name of Rome. The fan could be so an illustration of the boustro-phedonic Rome- Amor.
it’s extremely curious the third oriental scene painted on yellow silk. At the center 2 young persons, a man and a woman exotically dressed ( to be noticed the curled feathers’ crown of the woman), they have the hands united as a couple sign. The man indicates with the left hand the idol- a white bearded old man and the open arms- adored by two bald Chinese figures, one of whom offers to the divinity a basket of red roses. Another couple, the man sitting with the crossing legs and the woman on foot, they both indicate the idol. On the right of the central couple, a lady walks with a strange umbrella which covers her head but showing her face. A popular venetian dressed boy , with red and white lines, holds the umbrella, the lady holds in her left hand clenched in fist along her side, an authority sign, with the right hand she seems to indicate 2 sitting figures of musicians. The figures remind those ones cut in the work of Civitates Orbis Terrarum of Abramo Ortelius of the end of the XVI century. In general they represent the theme of the exotic couple, but even the more general theme of the East or of Asia.
Painted on kid skin a vegetable theme maybe retouched in gold of whom we can notice light signs.