Thursday, March 25, 2010

Tulip Vases (Tulpvaas)

The last weeks in the supermarket Albert Heijn I have noted these mini tulip vases above, porcelaine made, very cute. They were firstly being sold at 7,95 euros, then 5,95 euros... and the price is still going down. Interesting how such a symbol of wealth has been transformed into a democratic object.
Tulip vases started to be designed on the XVII century. Tulips were very expensive flowers and deserved a very special vase to be the centerpiece of ostentation in a home. Even without flowers, such vase worked as a symbol of high status and pride for the owners.

The vase had a heart shape and generally 5 to 8 holes for the tulips - and very important: was hand painted in "Delft blue" colour. Another traditional shape was like a pyramid of several layers. Below, some other examples of tradional and contemporary work.

Above: tulip vase Stedelijk Museum in Zwolle, XVIII century.

Above: tulip vase at the Gemeente Museum in The Hague, Delft pattern.

Photo above: contemporary work in clay from artist Fransje van Keulen. To me, it looks like Cretean vases from thousands of years ago ! (But then that's my interpretation, not the author's...)
Above: contemporary interpretation of a tulip vase. Available at several home interior decoration shops in the NL. I have seen it a years ago at Pol's Potten, in Amsterdam and Het Arsenaal in Naarden.
Below: photo taken from a shop in the Prinsengracht right opposite Anne Frank's house museum.

Below: a tulip vase I spotted in a house in Amsterdam South.

Above, a modern variation of a tulip vase according to artists Job Smeets and Nynke Tynangel from Studio Job. It can be admired at the Zuiderzee Museum in Enkhuizen.
Vase... or surrealistic sculpture ?
According to Smeets and Tynangel, their work is inpired in the XVII century tulip vases but there are no holes for inserting flowers. Instead of flowers painted in the traditional Delft blue style you can see cockroaches - as symbol for the decline of opulence. After all, everyone nowadays can buy tulips for just some euros. Even in the Dutch supermakets you can find them available. Design for the masses... that's something so Dutch.


Amanda Blog and Kiss said...

There is a pyramid tulip vase in the Rijksmuseum that is as tall as a person.

I love the Smeets and Tynangel one! It's great!

EFRUTIK said...

I'm starting to really like tulips lately. I like the simple vase on the top. Although I would still prefer a simple ordinary vase as opposed to the one with multiple holes. It sort of looks weird to me. Thanks for sharing!

Ladybird... and butterfly said...

Did you know that tulips still grow in their vase?? If you make sure they have enough water, they will!! I find it really fascinating :D

Jaboticaba Preta said...

Eu ainda não vi estes vasos nos AH daqui. Beijocas

Anita said...

Yes Amanda, some vases are indeed huuuuge. Museum piece !
Tulips are fascinating. They do not look real. There was a Turkish sultan who was completely crazy about tulips.
Jabo: nem todo AH e' igual.

Orangesplaash said...

When I came here initially, I simply marveled at these vases. I love them still and have a couple of them in my house..after all what is NL without tulips :)