According to art consultant Sylvia Wyant, “Skillfully removing parts of the human body from the pages of various seamy, steamy magazine pages, Artist Tina Collen transforms the scraps she’s excised into faithful reproductions of real, live, flowers, using the proper names and demonstrating the structure, color and appearance as shown in standard botanical reference materials. The metamorphosis is truly remarkable. Viewing each perfectly accurate flower is an exercise in observation… and surprise. The juxtaposition between the subtle grace of each wildflower collage and the sexy images contained within, is a delight. Quite a body of work.”
Robert Pritikin, author, lecturer and marketing sage said in a letter to the artist, “It’s been a long time since I’ve seen anything so creative and clever. Congratulations.”
Former Director of Education at The Museum of Modern Art in New York, Philip Yenawine, described the whimsical collages as, “The meeting ground of Georgia O’Keefe, Linda Lovelace and Erma Bombeck, a celebration of beauty, sensuality and humor: a secret garden of delights.”
“Damned incredible,” said Muldoon Elder, owner of the Vorpal Galleries in New York, San Francisco and Laguna.
Betty Fridan, an early feminist, came to the exhibition in Soho to view the work and showed her approval with a belly laugh. “You think this is pornography?” she queried her companion. “I think it’s hilarious.”
Goldenrod Erecta appeared beside Marilyn Monroe and Madonna in an exhibition documenting the history of erotic photography. The show, which toured museums in Germany, was recorded in an elegant book entitled Bilderlust, published by Edition Braus in Heidelberg. Included in this photographic collection are also the works of Edward Steichen, Helmut Newton, Man Ray, Horst and David Hamilton among others. The year-long tour included the prestigious Museum Ludwig in Cologne.
French art critic, Jose Pierre, attended the show in Paris and wrote in his review, “This whole series is secretly and delightfully naughty. Done with such playfulness, elegance and subtlety that by the time the viewer knows what they are looking at they are already in on the joke.”
Sara Davidson, journalist, novelist, TV writer, producer and New York Times best-selling author wrote about the artist’s work, “I discovered Collen through her Fleurotica collages. At first glance, I thought I was looking at lush paintings of wildflowers, but on closer examination, I was in the world of the Kama Sutra. Based on the idea that flowers are simply sex organs, Collen created her wildflowers from risqué magazine scraps. She took something forbidden and transformed it into something witty, beautiful and acceptable.“In Storm of the i, her memoir (which includes several Fleurotica pieces), she takes a heart-breaking story and transforms it into something witty, beautiful — and unforgettable.”