On Friday, July 1, the EMP Museum held the North American debut of New Zealand’s largest art show in its 28th year, World of WearableArt. With the official exhibit opening on July 2, the Friday night festivities were in celebration of the opening exhibit, allowing guest access before Saturday. Check out photographer Tiffany Bri’s coverage of the night below.
Every year, a design competition and awards show is staged in Wellington, New Zealand to showcase award-winning garments that result from an international competition. A fusion of fashion and art, the exhibit aims to access the deepest convolutions of imagination and creativity, resulting in pieces that seem other-worldly. Due to the nature of the competition, the artists that enter range from designers, sculptors, architects, blacksmith, illustrators, costume-makers and many other types of artisans.
The opening party was something out of a dream, with conceptually similar themes that range from Cirque du Soleil to Edward Scissorhands. In addition to access to the exhibit, there were plenty of things to entertain guests, including a performance by aerialists, stilt walkers and live music by cellist Gretchen Yanover and DJ Explorateur. Guests could get in line for metallic flash tattoos, or get an “arty updo” by a stylist from VAIN Salon. In the competitive spirit, there were coloring contests that guests could partake in, as well as an interactive fiber-based installation with a live durational performance by local artist Mandy Greer. The boundlessness of creativity was a clear inspiration for many, as guest attire was of the utmost versatility in terms of color, shapes and textures.
World of WearableArt founder Dame Suzie Moncrieff was in attendance and shared some remarks about the exhibit, alongside a few of the other artists involved with the showcase. She spoke to how the art show as a whole is meant to be an entire experience rather than simply aesthetic. The pieces were as enchanting as they were entrancing, drawing most guests to want to touch them due to their unique and vivid nature. Most pieces had samples of the used material in front of the actual piece to give a more complete understanding of what each piece feels like.
Shows like World of WearableArt are one of the many things that are slowly making Seattle more attuned to the international stage. Be sure to see the show while on display at EMP Museum until January 2, 2017.