Agustina Woodgate's "Collectivism": Animal Rugs and Human Hair
Woodgate told us, "I am using material people relate to, materials they see everyday (that are) loaded with cultural meaning. People relate to this." We all had stuffed animals, so we have memories to talk to each other about when we're looking at the rug.
"Collectivism" is a multimedia collection featuring work from earlier in her career with "Changes" (2005) and one of the items from her rug project, No Rain No Rainbows. Of the show, she said, "I am excited myself, because this is the first time that I am going to be seeing my own work, two of my own works in the same room together."
The Argentine artist currently lives in Miami and is taking pilot lessons. We asked her, why flying, and she said, "Why not?" An admirer of Amelia Earhart, she continued, "I am kind of obsessed with the idea of flying, and our human possibilities of transporting that way. Learning to fly in any possible way is my endeavor."
She has exhibited and performed her all over the globe, from Los Angeles to Puerto Rico. Woodgate's rug collection is not only visually stunning, with patches of colors creating patterns that reflect the titles, but, like we mentioned, made of stuffed animals.
"Although the choice of using stuffed animals began from a personal memory, it quickly became an observation about cultural archetypes and our relationship with objects." We imbue life in these objects, and then discard them, but, "These toys exist as memory items and as a consequence it's hard to get rid of them." She doesn't cut the material, she reorganizes it like a puzzle, stitching intricate shapes.
She considers herself a humanist and an environmentalist but not so much a feminist. Yet her work speaks largely of work women do. "Now that I'm doing all of these rug productions, these rug collections, I started researching the production of the rugs, how they're made, the history. They're done by ten women at the same time."
No Rain No Rainbows
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Her other earlier work, "Changes," is a collection of 24 monoprints featuring hairless portaits of the artist, and panels where she sewed her hair into the shape of her figure. "I collected one year of the hair that was falling from my head in a jar, when I was taking showers."
Her work involves long processes that involve many players and interactions. "I gave haircuts in the streets for almost four years, I would set up my chair in random corners and just provide a free service, in exchange I would get the discarded body parts." The hair, presumably.
"At the time I wasn't very sure why I was collecting all this hair, but there was something about the process that was very interesting to me. This idea of giving haircuts in the streets, the conversations that arise from those moments, people's reactions, questions, and curiosities. Then I started finding envelops and bags at my studio door, people were collecting it for me. They would cut their hair and save it. Same thing happens with the stuffed animals. People found a place for these loving animals other than the trash or the thrift store."
She said of her work, "I love creating this narrative."
Agustina Woodgate's exhibitions will be displayed at Spinello Projects (155 NE 38 Street, 101, Miami) this Saturday, April 9, from 7 to 10 p.m. The exhibition is open till May 28.
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