Entries are open until 2 March 2023 for the World of WearableArt (WOW) Awards Competition, the world’s leading wearable art competition which brings the work of designers to life in the most extraordinary of ways each year in the WOW Awards Show, a large-scale theatrical spectacle held in Wellington, New Zealand attracting an audience of more than 60,000 people.
“It was exhilarating. The way they present the show, the way they treat your garment, the choreography; it’s beautiful.” – WOW Designer, Manas Barve, India
This Competition is a unique platform to share and showcase your creativity with the world.
For thirty-five years, the World of WearableArt has been a platform for designers from every corner of the globe, from all walks of life and backgrounds to fulfil their creative dreams, push boundaries and challenge themselves to create unique works of wearable art that will be brought to life in the WOW Awards Show.
“WOW is a phenomenon. It inspires designers to be more creative; to be bold and brilliant. And the designers, in turn, drive WOW to be more innovative, more extensive and, generally, just more of everything.” – WOW Competition Director, Heather Palmer
The Competition is internationally renowned, and each year attracts entries from more than 40 countries. Whether you’re entering to design free from commercial restraints, to add to your student portfolio or to push the limits of your imagination, the WOW Awards Competition offers a truly unique creative outlet.
Who Can Enter WOW?
The WOW Awards Competition is open to anyone over the age of 18, from anywhere around the world.
Designers, creatives, and makers from all walks of life – fashion, textile or industrial designers, jewellers, architects, engineers, sculptors, painters, homemakers, gardeners, doctors, librarians, and more – enter WOW. All you need is a strong creative concept, well executed.
Fundamental to the WOW Awards Competition is the principle that anyone can enter, and anyone can win. Competition finalists are determined through a closed-judging process where the judges are presented with the garment name, and the inspiration behind the work; however, the designer’s details and experience are not disclosed, allowing the work to be considered solely on its own merit.
Anything that is wearable art can find a place on the stage, as long as it is original, innovative, and beautifully made.
For 2023 there are six section themes for designers to be inspired from when entering the Competition. This includes three recurring sections; Aotearoa, Avant-garde and Open, and three new sections, Gold, Mars & Beyond and Bizarre Bra, that are unique to 2023. Read here for more section theme details.
Why Enter WOW?
As well as a total prize pool of over $185,000 (NZD), the Competition offers the chance to access exclusive residencies and internships with global creative companies including Wētā Workshop (Wellington, New Zealand) and The Residency Experience (Los Angeles, United States), while giving designers scope to experiment with new techniques and technologies and build on professional portfolios of creative work.