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Black Silk Round Fan Embroidered with Butterfly and Flower Design

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Period: Qing dynasty (1644-1911)
Medium: silk, bamboo
Dimensions: overall height: 48.2 cm, width: 31 cm

The fan has a foliated edge that resembles a twelve-petaled flower. On both sides of the fan, designs of flying butterflies and chrysanthemums on leafy stems are embroidered against a black silk background. 
  The fan boasts small, close and neat stitches, which reflect outstanding needlecraft. On a two-dimensional surface the embroidery creates a sense of three-dimensionality with light and dark tones. The stretcher in the middle visually divides the fan into two parts.   
  The fan has modest yet tasteful colors. Bright tones are only found at the end the butterflies' wings to brighten the whole design. The shield at the bottom of the fan is designed in the shape of a Ruyi ("as you wish" emblem) which is on one side inlaid with stained ivory openwork, and is embroidered with bat and peach patterns on the other.  
  Painted red at either end, the bamboo handle was carved with patterns of flower and garden rocks in relief.

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