Sens et sujets de l'éventail européen de Louis XIV à Louis-Philippe

Abstract : Nowadays fans are often kitsch and for tourists. Associated with fashion, these fragile feminine objects have been misjudged and remain unknown. Built for this thesis from public and private collections and public sales, an eclectic database is capable, thanks to a statistical approach, to query and study 2350 items. This study deals mainly with the topics on fan leaves during a very long Eighteenth Century. Twenty monographs are focusing on objects of the various determined categories. Statistics and monographs, informed by the observation of contemporary art and society, enter into dialogue. The Fan appears as a reflection of art through myths, sacred and ancient history, and morality painting. But it is also a witness or an actor in the social, political, and theatrical life, and even used for promoting economic projects or for caricature. Almost all fans carry a meaning, even those "without history", adorned with pastoral scenes, seemingly only mirrors of fashion or occasions of entertainment. This meaning has long been obscured because of the social transformations of the Nineteenth Century, perhaps for the reason that fans were originally an area of freedom and power of women - even going to libertinism? - For this objet d’art, both public and private, speaks, through the subjects that adorn it, a real speech (largely related to marriage but to love as well). Woman was both recipient and speaker. Studying these objects and learning to decipher their messages would improve their understanding and benefit various disciplines.
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Pierre-Henri Biger. Sens et sujets de l'éventail européen de Louis XIV à Louis-Philippe. Art et histoire de l'art. Université Rennes 2, 2015. Français. ⟨NNT : 2015REN20026⟩. ⟨tel-01220297⟩

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