It occurred to me this week that I didn’t update my blog last year to celebrate my persistence in The World of Wearable Art that culminated in a huge win for myself and my collaborator Bruce Mahalski. I’ve been entering WOW since 1995, with 27 finalist entries in show and whilst the sole object of making a creation isn’t to win an award, success is sweet when you go up on that stage in front of a couple of thousand people and receive a trophy, applause and then a nice monetary boost (which as we all know mostly gets ploughed back into more creative pursuits!).
Bruce and I started creating ‘Fera Dei, Queen of the Rabbit Ravaged Moonscape’ in the November before the first Covid lockdown in 2020. You can read about the collaboration and process here.
Fera Dei was one of the most beautiful things I have ever worked on and came together like a dream…once I’d figured out the engineering of it of course! The fabric uses images I took from Central Otago and Bruce’s bone collection which I got printed on chiffon at Digital Décor in Upper Hutt. I used a whole bolt of red tulle over a crinoline base underneath the fabric art. Bruce created his genius mosaic and placement of bones over a Worbla base that I created for him to work on just before the world locked down. He worked on it over that time, sending me photos when it was done and I picked it up on a road trip to Dunedin once we were able to travel again. When it was modelled onstage I nearly cried it was so lovely, the model Misha Ruddlesden made it glide like it was on wheels! But it was her movement that made it so incredible. We designers were all weeping with delight because it had taken so long for our entries to get to this point- with lockdowns, the show was postponed for 2 years and we all wondered if our pieces would ever get to stage, but they did and what a show last year!
There are many, many people involved, tech teams, wardrobe, choreography, music, models, designers, judges … a few hundred people bring this show together and it’s astounding- an utter feast for the visual and auditory senses. If you’ve never been, book your tickets now, you won’t be disappointed.