Natura (non) morta
How much power would you give a 3-day flower?
Old Masters were fascinated by the power of tulips. In the 16th century it meant wealth, status and resources. In the time of early discovery of the Middle East, tulips were brought by merchants to Europe as a rare wild mountain flower. Tulip bulbs were traded on special stock markets e.g. in Amsterdam and were traded for a value of a house.
Artists were asked to paint them during their few days of bloom to eternalise owner’s wealth for posterity. This is how the Old Masters like Brueghel and Mignon made an impact in the art world.
However, like all economic bubbles, the tulip market eventually burst by late 1637. Nowadays, we merely consider them a pure and colourful symbol of new life, spring and impermanence of life.