This elegant fan appears to be from the Meiji, or late Edo (mid-19th century) era, although its high quality sets it apart from standard export wares. It is meticulously crafted, with a subtle hand-painted leaf. Unusual for a Japanese folding fan, the front leaf is constructed of very finely plain-woven silk adhered to a paper substrate. In Japan, this construction is more typically found on rigid fans (Uchiwa) or on hanging scroll paintings (Hyousou), rather than on folding fans, which tended to have paper leaves. The mounting process that was used for the front leaf is the same as that used for the creation of hanging scrolls in which a textile is backed with a sheet of Japanese paper and adhered together with starch paste. The wavy color gradation and gold highlights in the design are typical of the late Edo period and also make reference to designs from the Heian period (794-1185).
- Fan, 1860–1910, Japan, front leaf of dyed and painted silk adhered to paper, back leaf of paper with areas of silver leaf, stained bamboo sticks, exotic wood guards, glass or plastic button at the rivet, Gift of Heather Sandifer, 2016-9-2