19 Dec ARC (Animal Rug Company)
About the Project
Animal Rug Company (ARC) directed by artist and designer Agustina Woodgate repurposes synthetic toy pelts or stuffed animals into floor coverings or rugs. ARC’s new collection, Catastrophes, was produced during a year-long residency at El Espacio 23. The new series is made up of four handmade rugs created entirely out of once-loved stuffed animals. Each rug references a natural disaster – hurricanes, wildfires, droughts and floods – and aims to emphasize the importance of sustainable practices while showcasing art’s positive impact on underserved communities.
The works were produced in collaboration with Goodwill South Florida, located just a few blocks from the residency.. With its mission of skills training and job placement for people with disabilities and other barriers, El Espacio 23 facilitated the introduction to Goodwill’s apparel manufacturing division, known for producing a large portion of U.S. military uniforms and interment flags. This collaboration gave ARC access to Goodwill’s team of highly skilled sewing operators. They were integral in the sourcing process, helping to collect hundreds of synthetic animals from it’s Goodwill Superstore in Allapattah, to be unstitched at community gatherings, and later converted into rugs by the ARC team.A percentage of the sales from the collection will be donated back to Goodwill South Florida to support job creation efforts for people with disabilities in the community.
ARC (Animal Rug Company) is a social enterprise directed by artist and designer Agustina Woodgate. ARC fabricates functional rugs carefully crafted out of repurposed and recycled stuffed animal toy pelts resulting in luxurious floor coverings. Abandoned synthetic stuffed animals are dismantled, unstitched at the seams and rearranged into rugs. Each carpet is a functional collage of discarded soft toys and reconstructed love stories, providing a sustainable, washable, vegan alternative to the animal pelt rugs. The rug production engages local communities at all stages of the production. ARC works with a profit-share model and donates a percentage of proceeds to local nonprofits, creating a circular economy in which the ARC becomes socially sustainable and ecologically resilient.