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Brancott Estate World of Wearable Arts Show

The WoW Factor Comes to Wellington Again

When it has such a sweetly quirky acronym, how could we ever forget the importance of the annual World of Wearable Arts show? Better known as WoW, this internationally acclaimed arts and fashion extravaganza certainly has the wow factor in spades. Every year, the show attracts hordes of fashion lovers to the TSB Bank Arena in Wellington, where spectators are treated to a marvellous display of artistic innovation and wildly unique creativity. However, calling such designer creations “clothes” (or even “costumes”) feels like a dully inadequate depiction, as these words simply cannot encapsulate the fiercely unrestrained, and often quite bizarre, nature of these wonderful outfits.

Wearable Arts Show Catwalk Model
Wearable art on the catwalk – image courtesy of centralasian/flickr.com


While they are modelled on the human body, the truth is that these pieces are, first and foremost, works of highly original art. Designers can create and submit their entries under seven different categories, ensuring a wide range of uniquely diverse appearances that have been tailored to fit within certain creative constraints across the entire showcase. As a fashion and arts festival, WoW redefines the very idea of ‘thinking outside the box.’ If you haven’t picked up a ticket yet, make sure to get in quick, because this is one out-of-this-world visual experience that you will definitely not want to miss.

Children’s Section

The theme for this section in 2013 is a reinterpretation of the classic ballet uniform, the tutu. Entrants are encouraged to restructure the traditional form of the outfit and add a unique twist to their creation, that will hopefully differentiate them from their fellow competitors.

American Express Open Section

This section is a bit of a free-for-all! Entrants can pretty much do whatever they want and use any and all materials to construct their creation, which raises the stakes somewhat in terms of the level of originality and innovation they need to reach.

Weta Workshop Costume and Film Section

Everything you’ve ever seen from your craziest dreams and scariest nightmares might make an appearance in this section, as here designers are given free rein to create the most surreally peculiar outfits they can think up.

Avant-Garde Section

It is perhaps this category that most strongly subverts the idea of WoW as a typical, commercially-driven fashion show, as entrants are urged to reject fashion trends, fads and everyday societal notions of conventionally beautiful or attractive attire.

Gen-I Creative Excellence Section

This year, the focus for this section is based upon the incredibly intricate geometric shapes featured in the prints and illustrations of German artist Ernst Haecke. Haecke’s use of precise lines and fantastical forms has inspired countless designers and artists since the late nineteenth century.

Manunleashed Section

The inspiration for this section is the 1960s. This decade was characterised by alluring psychedelic visions and designs, wherein vivacious splashes of sizzling bright colour and swirling, vigorously repetitive patterns reigned supreme.

Air New Zealand South Pacific Section

Entrants in this section pay tribute to the beautiful legends and eventful history of New Zealand’s Maori heritage and culture. The opportunities to strike out and be creative are countless, as designers can draw on so many forms of significant natural imagery, such as the earth, sea, sky and forest.

Ultimately, the World of Wearable Arts show is an arts exhibition that seeks to break the boundaries of fashion stereotypes and truly express pure, unadulterated creativity when it comes to adorning the human body. If you’re feeling stuck for inspiration in creative areas of your own life, just head to WoW and immerse yourself in the pure energy and vivacity of the show – you’ll be sure to leave feeling much more invigorated.

If you’re going to be in Wellington and fancy seeing wearable art come alive, check out Europcar’s great range of rental cars today.



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