A Woman's Secret Heart, 2021

Installation view
I scarcely lowered my voice, as I whispered all the secrets of my heart as into hollows tree so that nobody might hear in the sleepless world my desires.
My heart pumps blood, my heart beat indicates the flood of life while my uterus rhythmically fills and empties with the same red flame preparing to grow and protect life.
I began to draw lines, imaginatively connecting my heart with my uterus in a direct link. I have looked. I have noted and my thoughts shed their traces on the paper.
I looked at my heart and I felt as if I looped in. I observed my womb and I saw myself inside the loop of time, volatile yet solid.
I am angular, I am shaped like a sphere. I am incandescent, I am dim. I am muted, I am expanded. I have forgotten my face, or my deviation from my ideal self. I turned red, I turned into flame and I became heart and womb.
I have sunk to the depths of my being, leaving no shadow, no burnt traces and no wisps of smoke to be kept in nostrils. No sounds rattle along my thoughts.
I begin to draw a figure in the flow of my being, the contour of a new beginning, a new life.
Dots running into themselves and into dashed lines sketching ambiguous silhouettes, and finally heading into the uninterrupted contour of a new persona.
Should this be the beginning of the story?
Yet beginning implies an ending.
Should I become the last ripple of a wave, the wave that dies away while inspires the next one with the desire to rise over the world?
Had I been born knowing that in the same stream of life one death follows another, I might have been awake and aware of every movement away from my desires.
We change bringing in new tides of perceptions, following new dreams.
Yesterday I enjoyed the absence of a baby, today longing for its presence.
The present is rolling up in the mist of the past and is laying flat the future like a new carpet.
I shall turn my body into a den, a warm shelter for my child.
The eyes will see, when they are shut, inside my body and beyond.
Can one desire fall like a blanket of night uncovering in the morning, when the down creeps in and the sun is glancing, a new personality or another probable self that takes over?
Am I bringing a new life into the world through a baby or am I birthing another me?
As I gaze out onto the world I am unable to pass by the ripple of my desire.
The desire; the aspiration to manifest into form a transcendental realm. The realm of thought that has no body or shape and it appears absent to the eyes. That realm, where we can learn about our lost origins, impinges upon us to constantly seek out to reconstruct our beginnings in the search for the ideal self.
Presence is the original state. I can see the world the moment I open my eyes I assume that the presence came first self-reflected by my consciousness.
But the depth of my desire reveals itself in the silence of the present absence.
I shall use love as the power of reinforcing insight.
I shall give birth to you from a state of grace not as a captive of my desires. Your absence calls for a new beginning. I shall regrow my body with your presence.
We will speak a silent language and in the absence of the outer sounds our hearts will turn eternal.
You will ask what the infinite is and I will tell you about what the eyes cannot see...
You will ask what is behind the clouds and you will know one way in which the infinite is looking back to you.
You will ask why the water moves in ripples at the touch of your hand... and why leaves marks upon your skin... and you will learn there is no separation but one Soul speaking in many voices.
Anca Stefanescu, Notes on “A Woman's Second Heart”, 2021


A Woman's Secret Heart IV, 2021

Media: acrylic paint and graphite on archival cotton paper mounted on museum board
Frame size: 120 x 160 cm, paper size: 100 x 140 cm

'One soul slipped inside my mind... one irreplaceable memory that lightened up the many windows of the future.'
(written notes incorporated into the artwork)


A Woman's Secret Heart II, 2021

Media: acrylic paint and graphite on archival cotton paper mounted on museum board
Frame size: 120 x 160 cm, paper size: 100 x 140 cm

'We are born, plunging into our bodies as if tied with them, embodying a richness of emotions of lovers and rivals, fulfillments and disillusions...
We enter the human bodies before the first words are spoken, before having the identity of a name.'
(written notes incorporated into the artwork)


A Woman's Secret Heart, 2021

Installation view


A Woman's Secret Heart, 2021

Installation view


A Woman's Secret Heart V, 2021

Media: acrylic paint and graphite on archival cotton paper mounted on museum board
Frame size: 120 x 160 cm, paper size: 100 x 140 cm



A Woman's Secret Heart VII, 2021

Media: acrylic paint and graphite on archival cotton paper mounted on museum board
Frame size: 120 x 160 cm, paper size: 100 x 140 cm

'Love has the power of reinforcing insight,
The eyes will see when they are shut
Inside the body and beyond.'
(written notes incorporated into the artwork)


A Woman's Secret Heart IX, 2021

Media: acrylic paint and graphite on archival cotton paper mounted on museum board
Frame size: 120 x 160 cm, paper size: 100 x 140 cm



A Woman's Secret Heart, 2021

Installation view


A Woman's Secret Heart VIII, 2021

Media: acrylic paint and graphite on archival cotton paper mounted on museum board
Frame size: 120 x 160 cm, paper size: 100 x 140 cm



A Woman's Secret Heart I, 2021

Media: acrylic paint and graphite on archival cotton paper mounted on museum board
Frame size: 120 x 160 cm, paper size: 100 x 140 cm



A Woman's Secret Heart III, 2021

Media: acrylic paint and graphite on archival cotton paper mounted on museum board
Frame size: 120 x 160 cm, paper size: 100 x 140 cm



A Woman's Secret Heart VII, 2021

Media: acrylic paint and graphite on archival cotton paper mounted on museum board
Frame size: 120 x 160 cm, paper size: 100 x 140 cm

'In my mind's eye, I feel a void in the non-existent space
I feel you even if I don’t see you.
Black voids of space interrupted by desire.
Here and beyond.'


A Woman's Secret Heart VI, 2021

Media: acrylic paint and graphite on archival cotton paper mounted on museum board
Frame size: 120 x 160 cm, paper size: 100 x 140 cm



A Woman's Secret Heart, 2021

Installation view