China 2020.

by Anna Colombo

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This drawing is part of my experiment with the use of white pencil on black support.

The fan is an object of ancient origins used to cool off during the hot months. Over time it also became a valuable object to be displayed and collected in different colors and shapes, becoming a refined fashion for court ladies throughout Europe, so much so that it entered the trousseau.

In the eighteenth century, fans, which technically improved opening and closing, became a tool of communication, similar to the language of moles. Ladies and knights invent a language that communicates moods or requests depending on the position of the fan.

The fan is used above all for seduction and amorous intrigues, with the possibility it gives of hiding the eyes or part of the face, hiding smiles, blushes, tears or dissimulating them.

By titling this drawing, I associated the idea of the fan with 2020, the year in which hiding behind a mask took on different meanings, but certainly allowing the same attitudes or creating new coded languages, perhaps to play down its use...

Here I collect some ways of this code from the ancien regime fan, which can also be a fun game:

YES = place it on your right cheek.

NO = place it on your left cheek.

YOU WANT TOO MUCH = hold it in your right hand.

COME CLOSER AND TALK TO ME = hold it in your left hand.

FORGET ME, PLEASE = clasp your hands under the fan.

DON'T BETRAY OUR SECRET = cover the left ear with the fan.

I HATE YOU = draw lines on your open hand.

I LOVE YOU = pass the fan over the cheek.

EXCUSE ME = pass the fan in front of the eyes.

WE WILL BE FRIENDS = drop the fan.

I'M MARRIED = slowly wave the fan.

I'M ENGAGED = wave quickly.

WHY DON'T YOU UNDERSTAND ME? = look at the fan with a frown.

GOODBYE = hold the fan with the little finger open and tense.

I WANT TO GET RID OF YOU = place the fan to my left ear.

AT WHAT TIME? = hold the fan with some rapiers open.

YOU HAVE CONQUERED MY LOVE = place it on your closed heart.

WHEN WILL YOU ALLOW ME TO SEE YOU? = bring the fan closer to the right eye.

I WILL BE CLOSE TO YOU FOREVER = open the fan and touch it.

I WANT TO SPEAK TO YOU = with one finger touch the tip of the fan.

I LOVE ANOTHER = to spin the fan in the left hand.

DON'T BE SO CAREFUL! = threatening movements with a closed fan.

YOU CAN KISS ME = half open fan placed against the lips.

FORGIVE ME = fan held open with hands together.

I PROMISE TO MARRY = slowly close a wide open fan.

YOU ARE CRUEL = open and close the fan several times.

KISS ME = place the handle of the fan against your lips.

DON'T FORGET ME = put the fan behind your head.

FOLLOW ME = fan in right hand in front of face.

I WANT TO KNOW YOU = fan in left hand in front of face.

I DO NOT WANT TO SEE YOU ANY MORE = fan held over left ear.

YOU HAVE CHANGED = slide the fan across your forehead.

THEY ARE WATCHING US = turn the fan in the left hand.

COME TALK TO ME = carry the open fan in the left hand.

YOU LOVE ME? = Present the fan closed.

This drawing perhaps allowed me to arouse curiosity or delight and perhaps to playfully seduce.


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