Andy Warhol’s 1979 screen print Lemons (F. & S. II.196) portrays ten lemons scattered across the picture frame. Each vibrant yellow lemon is rendered in varying levels of detail. Some have retained their photographic shadow and texture, while others appear as yellow blobs with some drawn-in black outlines. Regardless, the scene is recognizable as a bunch of lemons by their distinctive shape and color. In this composition, Warhol has played with the color palette, giving eight of the lemons pale blue shadows while the two top-right lemons cast a pink shadow. These three colors constitute a subdued primary colour palette, giving the image a pleasant warmth.
The small edition of Lemons is unique in the larger series of Space Fruit. This composition demonstrates less other-worldliness and a more neutral color palette than the vibrant compositions in the remainder of the series, adding to its rarity. The series Space Fruit began as a collaboration between Warhol and the printmaker Rupert Jasen Smith. The pair photographed fruit with heightened shadow before using overdrawing and color blocking to create the appearance of collage in their screen prints.