Maker Monday: An Aspire Exclusive Interview With Candita Clayton

During the last 10 years of mending the gap between artists and art lovers in New England, gallerist Candita Clayton has been able to discover, champion, and emerge mid-to-late-career artists. Clayton believes that great art should be easily accessible, which is why she often joins forces with interior designers to feature her artists’ fine art in spaces across Rhode Island, New Hampshire and beyond. Clayton’s artists’ mediums range from mixed media, ceramics, and oil on canvas which all can be found through her Artsy page or her website. Candita has been featured in many publications including The Wall Street Journal, Huffington Post and now aspire design and home. Introducing this week’s Maker Monday, Candita Clayton.

Marc Mazzarelli plays intimately with color, shape and form to create abstract paintings that are inspired by current events, historical themes, literary references, idealized gardens and industrial scenes. Pictured: Balancing Act, 2018.

Andrew Joseph: What makes you angry?
Candita Clayton: Mean people – Passive-aggressiveness.

Andrew: What is the last book you read?
Candita: Uncomfortable Conversations with a Black Man by Emmanuel Acho.

Andrew: What would you like remembered about you?
Candita: I hope people would say that I was a champion for the artists that I worked with.

Andrew: What’s one thing people don’t know about you?
Candita: I wrote a book about Green Living in 2008.

Jessica Brilli works in a style that encompasses American realism and 20th century graphic design aesthetics. Her paintings have been featured in solo and group shows throughout the United States. Pictured: Doralice, 2021

Andrew: What are three things you can’t live without?
Candita: My husband, airpods, music.

Andrew: How would you define your work in three words
Candita: Joyful, Intuitive, rewarding.

Andrew: What is your favorite COVID story that you will tell until your final breath?
Candita: I got to spend 5 weeks with my family and my daughter’s partner and that was beyond special.

Andrew: What’s your go-to snack between zooms?
Candita: White Cheddar Veggie Straws.

Andrew: What do you find yourself daydreaming about most these days?
Candita: Exhibition openings with my favorite people.

Deborah Forman’s textural and softly geometric paintings use tone and line to explore oppositional forces: two dimensional pattern with spatial depth, fast and slow, density with transparency, rooted with reaching, structure with gesture. Pictured: Plumblossom , 2020.

Andrew: Who’s the better therapist, your pet or your wine?
Candita: I can’t choose, so I’ll say both.

Andrew: What’s your go-to playlist for dancing alone in your living room?
Candita: Chill-Hop specifically Tom Misch and Mac Miller.

Andrew: Which 20 second chorus do you sing while washing your hands? Britney Spears’ “…Baby One More Time” or Beyonce’s “Love on Top”?
Candita: Neither, Bill Withers – “Lovely Day.”

Andrew: Are you the type to get fully dressed for a day of remote working, or the type to wear sweats?
Candita: I got dressed for work every day, even if I didn’t feel like it. It made me more productive.

Adam Waimon is a sculptural glass artist focusing on the blown glass and in-depth process of engraving. Inspiration for his work is drawn from a multitude of sources with a primary focus in the natural world. Pictured: Maelstrom, 2019.

Andrew: What are your thoughts on makeup in terms of remote working?
Candita: I have a minimal makeup routine which consists of mascara, eyeliner and lipstick I maintained the same during Covid.

Andrew: Which room in the house do you find yourself working from the most? Why? How does this inform your thoughts about architecture?
Candita: I crafted an office in one of the guest bedrooms. It’s really sunny and I can look at the neighbor’s horses.

Andrew: What would you like to be remembered for?
Candita: As a trailblazer in the art world making art accessible and helping artists sustain themselves through new vehicles for sales.

About The Maker | Candita Clayton, a Providence, RI native, has worked within the art and gallery community for just about a decade. Although always an entrepreneur, previous to the arts world she worked in fitness and nutrition, as well as professional organizing and closet design. She has had the honor of being featured with HGTV online, as well as other TV interview columns on organizing. However, after 20 years in those fields, she still held on to her dream of creating an art gallery. With Providence being a hub for arts and culture, it only made sense that she dug into her roots of her hometown, and moved forward with the creation of her eponymous gallery in 2010, and then subsequently, she opened her second gallery in New London, NH. With her constant inspiration surrounding art and those that create it, and her direct work with interior designers, she has an advantageous edge when it comes to artist representation and marketing artists’ work to be sold. With Candita’s experience and her entrepreneurial spirit, she has become a leader in the Rhode Island and New Hampshire arts community.

Andrew Joseph is a regular contributing editor for aspire design and home magazine. See more of his work here.

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