The tulip is a prime example of humanity’s obsession with transforming wild nature into an extravagant product. Favoured for their bulbs’ possibility of mutating into new species; tulips have mesmerised sovereigns, artists and travellers around the world.
During the Ottoman Empire’s Tulip Age, the palace consumed large amounts of its resources and attention on this flower. This period is known to have marked the beginning of the empire’s fall. This extravagant ideal travelled to other cultures, in 1637 at the peak of the Dutch Tulip Mania, a single bulb was worth ten times the annual income of a skilled craftsman. After centuries, this flower still retains its luxurious status, becoming the ultimate tourist destination to observe the ‘beauty of nature’ unfold.
In her short film, spring’s arrival wrapped the earth with mutation (2020), Eda Sarman takes the spectator on an intimate and immersive stroll around Istanbul’s Emirgan Park during this year’s deserted Tulip Festival. Produced this Spring, the artist documents nature blossoming in a chaotic moment when humans are locked inside due to nature’s unpredictable alteration of the world.