Mechano/Flower Fan 1979

Colorfully patterned fabric and acrylic paint form the shape of a fan against an orange background.

Miriam Schapiro, Mechano/Flower Fan, 1979; Gift of Mary Ross Taylor in honor of her mother, Betty S. Abbott

A founding mother of the Pattern and Decoration movement that paid homage to traditional womanly arts such as quilting and lace making, Miriam Schapiro has referenced fans in her art in various ways.

Fans cross chronological and cultural boundaries and are typically associate with women. Mechano/Flower Fan is an early example of Schapiro's exploration of this object.  The work features a strict geometry and fan mechanism that would loosen up in the artist's future iterations of form.

Schapiro composed the image with colorfully patterned fabric and acrylic paint. The ribs of the fan and the decorative fabric lend an energy to the work that beckons viewers into the vibrant composition.

National Museum of Women in the Arts