This Tulip is actually named after the famous Dutch artist.
There wasn’t any explanation as to why this particular variant of Holland’s most notorious bloom is named after one of its most renowned national figures, but I can probably concoct a few fancy tales.
The dark, sanguineous hue of these flowers can certainly symbolise the blood that flowed forth after Van Gogh cut off one of his ears. Incidentally, he didn’t do it because he was in love with a prostitute – as I heard previously, but after a particularly bad disagreement with fellow painter Paul Cezanne. He did deliver the severed ear to a brothel, presumably where Cezanne was staying after the spat.
At the same time, there is a shade of morbidity in the colour, which perhaps evokes Van Gogh’s struggle as an artist during life and his eventual psychosis that led to his suicide.
Of course, this is all speculation and conjecture. At Keukenhof, there are at least two other tulips that have similar colouring – Queen of the Night and Black Hero.