Adelaide Damoah is a British artist and writer of Ghanaian descent whose work combines African and Western influences while highlighting social issues.
Born in 1976, Adelaide Damoah graduated with a degree in Applied biology in 1999 and went on to work for two leading pharmaceutical companies in the first six years of her career. In 2000, Damoah was diagnosed with a chronic debilitating illness called endometriosis. The disease got steadily worse over the years, prompting her to leave the pharmaceutical industry and re-evaluate her life. Damoah says,
I had been drawing and painting as a hobby my entire life, so going on to do that professionally was a natural progression.
Damoah's debut exhibition entitled "Black Brits," took place in 2006 in the well-respected Charlie Allens Boutique, Islington, London, UK and received some media attention. It was featured on BBC News, Channel 5 News and other regional and local media outlets in the UK.
Damoah has had four solo shows to date in the UK including Supermodels, Black Lipstick, and a domestic violence exhibition for registered charity, the National Centre for Domestic Violence.
Damoah has examined social issues through her paintings including issues regarding race, identity, sexuality, and domestic violence. She cites her main influences as being artists Frida Kahlo, Renee Cox and Nancy Spero.
Adelaide Damoah also enjoys writing about art and is currently working on a series of interviews entitled “Art Success” in which she probes the minds of her contemporaries in a bid to discover what it takes to become successful in the art world. The interviews are currently published via a popular arts and culture magazine in the UK called Lime, her own blog and an art blog called Contemporary and Modern Art. Damoah will be publishing 100 of her Art Success series interviews in a book in 2013.
Art to me is a reflection of the spirit of the times, the very definition of the term Zeitgeist. Every time I create a piece it is a reflection of something from that time, from that moment. It is a way of documenting. I strive to avoid censorship so that I may progress in my ability to express and relate through my work each time I create a new piece.
The last four themes that I have exhibited have been consciously chosen for specific social themes, which were of interest to me. I like to work in series as I feel this allows me to express and tell a story about the chosen subject matter more completely. The themes I have focused on in the series of works I have produced to date include race, identity, sexuality, relationships and domestic violence. In my practice, I strive to produce something uninhibited by moral or aesthetic preoccupations.
I have now begun to explore social media with drawings and concept sketches as I am passionate about its relevance and influence on the existence of so many people across the globe, from a personal and a business perspective.
Being self-taught means that my technique is somewhat instinctive and the consequence is a body of work, which is free from traditional artistic rules. As a scientist at heart, I am obsessive about research, which means that I am on a constant quest to learn more about my craft. The point is to produce work which is as honest and true as possible in that moment. By reflecting the spirit of our times, I hope to engage the viewer with the work on more than just a visual level. I hope to engage the viewer on an emotional and intellectual level. The way I think about my work can be seen as an ode to the artist who started my passion for art and by whom I am still heavily influenced. Frida Kahlo.
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adelaide-damoah-biography.pdf (109 KB).