Watch and Listen

Floater 29 (Lemon Slice) by Derrick Adams

In the form of an apparent rest – a young woman on an inflatable mattress shaped like a slice of lemon, relaxing in a swimming pool – , American artist Derrick Adams represents a political act of resistance.

Derrick Adams
Floater 29 (Lemon Slice)
Acrylic painting and collages on paper
126 x 126,5 cm

Narrated by Olivia Fahmy, collection of African Contemporary Art and of the Diaspora curator

Leisure can be a radical act of fighting against diverse forms of oppression. Relaxation, as a way of being in the world, is however just as powerful. This time spent doing nothing is the subject of the artwork entitled Floater 29 (Lemon Slice), by Baltimore-born and Brooklyn-based artist Derrick Adams. The title comes from the lemon slice-shaped inflatable mattress on which a young woman in a swimming suit is relaxing and resting. From a series of over one hundred works, this painting is composed of collages and acrylic paint applied in unified colors of different tonalities. These technical elements recall the work of German artist Hannah Höch and Afro-American painter William H. Johnson, while illustrating one of myriad instances of Black normalcy, where rest can be read as both commonplace and a political act.