David J. Ranftl

Fans of the 18th to early 20th centuries



As a recognised expert for fans and objets d’art of the seventeenth to early twentieth centuries, I draw on lengthy professional experience in museums, auction houses and art dealerships to offer independent advice. Alongside my curatorial responsibilities at the German Fan Museum, I serve as advisor for several museums, authors, and collectors, and make regular assessments of private collections.

I can offer appraisals and valuations, as well as guidance on developing, maintaining or selling a collection. If you are looking for a specific object to add to your collection, I may also be able to assist.




I am always on the lookout for antique fans, even those in poor condition. If you have an item you would like to sell, please contact me with images of the fan.



Conservation and Restoration


I consider it the duty of each and every collector to ensure that his or her collection is preserved to the highest standard for future generations. To this end, I am one of very few experts to have made a speciality of fan conservation and restoration.

I regularly assess fans for clients, undertaking restorations myself or referring clients to other conservators when necessary.


Common restoration tasks include:


- Replacing the ribbons of brisé fans.

- Thorough surface cleaning.

- Removal of inappropriate earlier restorations.

- Repairing and strengthening broken fan sticks.

- Restoring deteriorated or torn fan leaves.

- Mounting damaged silk gauzes.

- Retouching painted areas.

- Replenishing abraded gold and silver leaf.


The following photographs show recently completed restoration projects.

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