Artist Creates Animal-Themed Art Using Thousands of Clothing Labels


Joy Pitts, an artist based in Nottingham, UK, has crafted a series of animal-themed art pieces using thousands of clothing labels. Most of Pitts’ work is done with used clothing labels that she combs through and chooses very carefully.

The process of gathering material is concerned with individual identity; how clothing has the ability to illustrate our way of life, perhaps the daily ritual of work or a special occasion. This communication of individuality is about our selection of style, colour, pattern, texture, size and brand. It is concerned with the quality of the label whose purpose is to communicate status. The second stage of the work is to remove the clothes labels from the neck of their individual garments, and reassemble them as a collective identity. By bringing a collection of labels together in an image or an object individuality is overcome by the projection of the masses. The label becomes a representative of society and is used in sculpture and assemblage to narrate the present.

In 2013, clothier Paul Smith commissioned Joy to create a rabbit, his favorite animal, and offered to her a choice palette of colors to work with.

RThousands of red, violet and blue Paul Smith labels are attached to the canvas in neat rows using dressmaker pins. The luxury of working with an unused supply of woven labels is reflected in the repeat pattern and highlights the process of making. A restricted palette has allowed colour to become the subject of the canvas, which on closer inspection reveals the value of the label.

Smith was really pleased with the resulting rabbit portrait.

Nottingham based artist Joy Pitts has made this amazing piece for me. I’m known for my love of rabbits and so Joy has made me one entirely out of Paul Smith clothing labels. …Thanks Joy!


Joy is will be showing her work at Lace Market Gallery, from April 23 to May 13 and at the Lally Gallery at the Erewash Museum, from September 11 to October 30.


The Good Shepherd

images via Joy Pitts

via BBC Nottingham, My Modern Met