Sakhile&Me is pleased to present the first solo exhibition of Adelaide Damoah outside the United Kingdom. Titled “Radical Joy,” the exhibition opens on 2 December 2021 and runs until 29 January 2021.
In “Radical Joy,” Adelaide Damoah extends her body print work into a playful and thoroughly explorative space, plunging into the realm of both sensory and sensual expression. The exhibition includes works on paper and on canvas as well as a triptych on wooden boards, each work being adorned with illuminated pigments peering out of blackness, soft and muted in parts and starkly sharp and vibrant in others. The works are layered in multiple soaks of dye and raw pigment and the compositions collectively reveal a sweeping release, mirroring Damoah’s conscious decision to rest and heal her mind by immersing herself in color.
Until 2020, the focus in Damoah’s art making was to direct her curiosity towards investigative practices, allowing herself to delve into culturally significant social and historical issues, such as the continual consequences of the epistemic violence of colonialism and intersectional feminism. As a consequence, much of the artist’s art making – both in terms of her performance and studio work – is by its very nature dark and heavy, even if the end result is aesthetically pleasing. This is apparent in the look and feel of the work and in the often heavy atmosphere of some of Damoah’s performances.
“Radical Joy” introduces another approach in the artist’s practice, diverting from her usual reds, blues and golds as she meditates on poetry, writing and music. She indulges in a space of play and sensuality, reveling in florescent pinks, yellows, purples and blues. In Damoah’s words, “I made a conscious decision to rest and heal my mind by immersing myself in color. Color, process and poetry became a means of escape into my inner world and I began making very different body print works to my usual in that my entire colour palette changed drastically from black, gold, red, blue and white. I became obsessed with hot pink, ultramarine and cobalt blue, fluorescent and deep purple, yellow and orange.”