A lace fan
A lace fan

This new exhibition is literally fan-tastic

An exciting new exhibition exploring the fascinating beauty of hand fans, their meaning, and history during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries is now open.

Opening at the St Andrews Museum, it includes some splendid examples which belonged to Lady Victoria Wemyss (1890-1994), a lady-in-waiting to Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother, Unfolding Fans: The Beauty Within is an exhibition curated by postgraduate Museum and Galleries students at the University of St Andrews.

It runs until 1 June and admission is free.

Robyn Matthews, postgraduate student and part of the display team, said: ‘Lifting the lid of the boxes and revealing the intricate patterns and beautiful colours hidden inside was without doubt my favourite part of the entire exhibition project.’

Alice Pearson, curator of exhibitions at ONFife Cultural Trust, said: ‘We are so lucky to have such a fantastic collection of fans here in Fife – visitors can step out of the Scottish weather into a wonderfully glamorous world of feathers, sequins and stunning fashions.’

A lace fan

As well as fans, this exhibition showcases a wide array of accessories and period dresses, all from Fife Council’s collection and cared for by ONFife Cultural Trust. Unfolding Fans explores the fascinating histories connected to these objects, such as their importance in contemporary fashions and their role in a possible secret language!

Featuring fans with a variety of intricate designs as well as techniques from around the world`, the exhibition invites visitors to delve into the stories and uses behind their beauty.

Visitors of all ages can also enjoy a wide range of interactive opportunities inspired by fans in the activity room next to the galleries. Running in conjunction with the exhibition is a programme of free events for children and adults alike – from a fun scavenger hunt or a paper folding workshop to thematic talks and curator’s tours.

The first of these events is Tea and Tour, 16 March and 27 April noon-1pm, a curator-led tour where visitors can get a glimpse behind the scenes of the exhibition’s creation.

For further information about the exhibition and events or booking click HERE  or telephone St Andrews Museum 01334 659380.