A new hybrid of flower has always occasioned celebration by gardeners and amateur botanists everywhere. It is hard to think of anything more innocently irresistible than a flower, new or familiar, while an imagined one must surely bring a special frisson of excitement. Or so I thought, on the day in June when such a flower grew in my mind's eye and demanded to be painted. Once begun, the experiment widened into an entire garden. They bloomed all at once, as if to race with a short summer, and soon there were twelve canvases of twelve flowers waiting to be named.
—from Dorothea Tanning: Birthday and Beyond. Exhibition brochure. Philadelphia: Philadelphia Museum of Art, 2000.