Tulips. Coveted, desired. Fancy-pants flowers.
For the longest time, I thought of tulips as extravagant, more money than they were worth. Fragile wings. Closed-mouthed. Cold-hearted.
Once upon a time I worked part-time in an office where one spring a co-worker kept a vase of tulips on her desk. Boringness. Then one day I happened to see a petal drop and noticed how vibrant and rich-colored the inside of the petal was. So amazingly different from its bland outer coat. I became a fan instantly. Everyday I watched the tulips unfold their true exotic and exciting depth of beauty.
Tulip Fever (2017)The other day, the Husband and I watched Tulip Fever, a movie set in the 1600s in Amsterdam during the maniacal period of selling and buying tulips as a commodity. With one much-sought after tulip, a poor man could suddenly become rich and marry the love of his life, or at least run away with her should she happen to be married. Being too greedy, pushing the value of that same much-sought tulip to an absurdly high value, the rich may crash into poverty.
This movie is about two love stories: a wealthy man's wife and the artist who painted their portrait and the couple's servant and a fishmonger. As Molly the Cat would ask if she were reviewing the movie: How was the tulip mania of this time a metaphor for the love stories? Why was it important for the mistress and the servant to work together to deceive the master? Is it still possible to have a happy ending when the bottom falls out?
When the deception and greed in the story got too intense for me, I pulled out my art journal to distract myself as I watched. What else to draw, but tulips.