Based out of New York City, Robyn Blair Davidson’s artwork is pretty sweet to look at. She combines art and candy to create wall pieces that bring out the most colorful parts of a client’s personality. Davidson, who has a house in Water Mill, has collaborated with TENET in Southampton and Baybi Pop in Montauk to showcase her delectable pieces. Saturated in color, each piece includes a phrase that pops off plexiglass. She’s also recently partnered with Dormify to sell print versions of her work.
What is your favorite candy?
To eat, I love sour belts from make-your-own candy bag stores. To work with, I love using movie theater candy boxes. They’re so colorful!
Why candy as a focal point?
I love candy. Growing up, candy was always a treat, and I still appreciate a good piece as an adult, clearly. Looking at candy has always made me innately happy, and smile, which my art now tends to do.
How did you come to partner with TENET and Baybi Pop?
The owner of TENET is a dear friend, and I’ve shopped with him for years. When I started my business, we caught up over lunch and he offered to display my pieces in his store over the summer, his busiest season, and the rest is history.
Baybi Pop was opening mid-summer and started collectively pulling some of the coolest brands to showcase in its store. A friend of mine was working with the owner, shared my art, and they reached out instantly to request pieces. They are currently selling my original art and candy dishes.
Tell me about your artistic process.
For the actual candy, I only use packaged pieces, never loose candy. I also use a special glue to help preserve each piece, and I work with expert plexiglass manufacturers to tightly seal my pieces, making sure that nothing can get in and nothing can get out. I tend to get lost in the candy packaging.
Sometimes I’m looking more at shapes, other times at colors. I go through phases of what I gravitate toward and what I want to see come to life. Right now, I’m obsessed with monochromatic colors of candy in my pieces and gradient colors in the text.
What made you decide to do this?
When I started, I actually had no intention of turning my love of candy into a full-time business. I was sitting in my living room in 2018 staring at a bowl of candy on my coffee table. I was really into making my space a reflection of who I am, and it hit me that I needed to put candy on the wall. I knew exactly what I wanted my first piece to look like. I’ve always thought that candy packaging is an art in itself.
For my first piece, “In Case of Emergency, Break Glass,” I filled a custom-designed acrylic plexiglass case with Dubble Bubble gum and printed the title of the work in hot pink block lettering on the front. I designed the exterior case to be one-and-a-half inches thick so that it had depth, but also was thin enough to hang on a wall as fine art.
When my closest friends and family saw it, they asked if I could make pieces for them, too. I posted a collection on Instagram and everything took off from there. I started getting custom orders fast and with my background in marketing and branding, I quickly turned it into a full-time business.
Can you name some celebrities that have your artwork?
I’ve designed pieces for actress Emmy Rossum, model Iskra Lawrence, designer Stephanie Gottlieb, public figure Arielle Charnas of Something Navy, and many more. I have a big clientele in New York, LA, Miami, Chicago, and I have international clients in Dubai, Shanghai, Toronto, and London.
You also do custom designs. How much do they go for?
Prices totally depend on what custom work we do. In some cases, I use an entire collection from my clients, and in other cases, I source the materials myself, which can make the price go up.