Episode 04 | The Black Tulip (Fadi's Art)

Watch the fourth episode of Lebanese artist Fadi Balhawan’s (1966) ‘behind-the-scene’ video called The Black Tulip. In this clip, the artist explains everything about how the painting, using the work of Alexander Deman, came to be. A unique piece of art that will soon be available as a so-called non-fungible token (NFT).

By Arthur Blok & Fadi Balhawan
NFTs are commonly seen as the new black in the world of art. These secure, authenticated digital certificates allow the acquisition of virtual art, which means new income opportunities for artists and a greater interest in digital art among museums.

“See as a form of digital data that reflects the actual artwork. It is a revolution in the world of art indeed. A collector can now choose to buy a painting and, or, the NFT as well”, said Balhawan. “If you compare them, the quality is wonderful.”
The Lebanese artist is a master in combining literature, calligraphy, ink and pens, painting, poems, and even video. In a nutshell, he transcribes well-known books in Arab literature or spiritual writings on paper or canvas. He recreates text in lines that run in various directions in a magnificently artistic manner.

The Black Tulip, a nice-read novel by Alexander Deman in the 16th century, is more than just a story. It is a plot of intrigue and betrayal, beginning with the lynching of the Dutch Grand Pensionary Johan de Witt and his brother Cornelis in 1672.

Both men were considered rebels against the stadtholder William III an ancestor of the current King of the Netherlands, Willem van Oranje (also known as William the Fourth).

During these events, there was tulip mania across the Netherlands. In this scenario, the main fictional character Cornelius Van Baerle belonged to the natural school, whose motto was:

"To despise flowers is to offend God".

The video gives a peek into the historical magic behind it all. It will soon be available as an NFT on the online marketplace Funoon. The beautiful music in the video is composed by Lebanese-Armenian composer Nareg Vassilian.
Watch the previous three episodes of Fadi’s Art here:

- Episode 01| My Story in Art

- Episode 02| Let’s make Lebanon a country full of culture again

- Episode 03| The Merchant of Venice

Fadi Balhawan

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