Theme Giant bulb – Geisha
This is about the desire for an illustrious object, in this case the tulip bulb. Two geishas both cherish a tulip bulb. One of the geishas is sitting on a bird and the other on a flower. They innocently admire their tulip bulb, unaware that they are being watched by privateers. The hijackers clearly have the appearance of the antagonist. One is a mythological bird of prey and the other a white tiger in human form. Both are predators, made for hunting. The white tiger is even still sitting on a giant black raven, which makes the robbery even more threatening. However, the landscape is idyllically designed with flowers and berries. The atmosphere seems pleasant. This contrast interests me. A possible crime in a bunch of giant flowers. However, the scene is a snapshot, and the viewer is not treated to the outcome either. The question is whether the hijacking will succeed. And if yes? In which hands do the tulip bulbs come into their own to bloom and shine?
Artist – Rik Smits
Rik Smits was the first to work with the tulip bulbs. In his own work the relationship between nature and culture dominates, stories about ration and the unconscious. Smits was caught by the story about the black tulip as articulated by the French painter Alexandr Dumas, but at the same time felt challenged to come up with new stories about tulips, especially from the current tension between Eastern and Western culture.