Delia Cancela: Queen of Hearts 1962–2018

Bilingual edition, Spanish/English
Texts: Carla Barbero, Javier Arroyuelo, Fernando García and Leticia Obeid
Graphic Design: Eduardo Rey
Translations: Kit Maude

256 pages
Format: 20 x 25 cm
ISBN 978-987-1358-58-8

This book about one of Argentina’s benchmark artists in twentieth-century art and design
was published to accompany the major retrospective exhibition Delia Cancela: Queen
of Hearts
, held by the Museo de Arte Moderno de Buenos Aires in 2018. It brings together
images documenting several decades of her work, as well as a complete chronology,
a curatorial text by Carla Barbero, essays by guest authors Javier Arroyuelo and Leticia
Obeid, and a conversation between Delia Cancela herself and Fernando García.

An ‘interfacing’ is the fabric placed between the cloth and lining of a garment to stiffen it
and give it more substance. It also describes a relationship, a connection. Both meanings
concern us here, and there is also the fact that Delia Cancela has literally been ‘between
two faces’ throughout her creative life or between two kinds of textiles: the canvases on
which she paints and the fabrics she uses to make clothing. Investing the same amount
of energy without intellectual discrimination, the same strength, originality and consistency,
Delia Cancela has painted, drawn, created costumes and, in her own way, practiced fashion.’

                                                                                                          Javier Arroyuelo

‘Just as markers and pencils accompanied Delia on her travels, so did recurring images
of women. Women she admires, women from her family, women in novels and the different
women that make up Delia Cancela. At her studio there is a shelf that for more than twenty
years has housed a forest of women’s faces. She seems to know better than anyone that
the body is the best place for images to reside. Every time she draws or designs, Delia
appears to question commonly-projected gazes upon bodies that, as images, make up part
of the collective corpus. With distinctive innocence, she encourages us to rethink the body
in terms of all the different bodies we come across in contemporary life: as a laboratory
where complex power transactions take place and where the construction of images offers
the poetic possibility of subverting the senses. Cancela has found a way to push the
boundaries of the canon to construct an image of a cultural body that is able to colourfully
house her playfulness, love and idyllic nature. ’

                                                                                                          Carla Barbero

The exhibition Delia Cancela: Queen of Hearts 1962–2018 was presented at the museum
from 24 November 2018 until 7 April 2019.