Candice Gosta is an artist whose paintings and installations examine the processing of trauma and emotions within Black domestic spaces. Honing in on their love of film, Gosta takes on the role of a director, set designer and screenwriter to communicate collective Black experiences through the lens of a genderfluid black femme.
Candice Gosta (b.1998) was born and raised in New Haven, Connecticut. They are now living and working in Portland after recently graduating from Maine College of Art (2020). During their time in Portland they joined local arts collective, Kesho Wazo (Tomorrow's Ideas in Swahili), producing work as their lead graphic designer. They partnered with numerous local organizations, including non-profit contemporary arts venue SPACE, Portland Public Library, and Maine Initiatives.
Gosta’s work has been included in several group exhibitions at Maine College of Art, SPACE, the Portland Public Library, Kesho Wazo Studios, and mostly recently, the “Let Equality Shine” mural located in Portland, ME.
"Maintaining my home's cleanliness and appearance is something my mother has enforced since I was a child. I have memories of spending entire Saturday mornings working on various "projects" that she wanted to get done before the arrival of any expected guests. She would make me clean the spaces that our guests would not see, which included my bedroom. Perhaps it was my stubbornness or young age, but I could never see eye-to-eye with my mother when it came to cleaning my room for the sake of it appearing "neat" for others. I would always ask her, "what's the point of cleaning my room if no one will see it?" This question remains relevant to my work. My mess results from my clutter or random chaos, so why should I feel the need to hide this from my viewers?
As I reflect on my childhood, I have learned that who we are in the home differs from who we are in the outside world's discomfort. I am most vulnerable at home, but only when I am alone — at work or school, I become highly selective about with whom I share anything personal. My studio practice desires to break down that wall and invite viewers into my "home" despite what the conditions may be. I want to cry with others; I want to laugh with others; I want to share embarrassment with others; I want to share the love with others; I want to be open about mental health; I want everyone to feel welcome in my emotional home."