Bay of Plenty 2019 WearableArt finalist revealed

WOW show from 2018. Image: Supplied.

A designer from the Bay of Plenty region is among the finalists from 22 countries announced for this year’s World of WearableArt Awards Show.

Kerry Funnel is the one and only finalist from the Bay of Plenty.

The world’s most significant wearable art competition is returning for its 31st season this year in Wellington from Wellington from September 26 to October 13.

About 60,000 people are expected to attend the 2019 WOW awards season.

WOW competition director Heather Palmer says this year’s finalists’ work is outstanding, with the designers pushing boundaries of invention and scale, using diverse materials and progressive technology.

“It never ceases to amaze me each year the sheer brilliance of our designers’ work and this year is no exception. There has been such a high level of experimentation and innovation by the designers this year, using materials in unexpected ways to create bizarre, edgy works of art.

“Finalist designers were selected over three days of judging at the WOW Museum in Nelson. I now look forward to the next two rounds of judging in September when we showcase the entries individually choreographed and placed within their magical theatrical worlds on stage at the TSB Arena in Wellington, where they will take on a new life in movement,” says Heather.

This year the 115 finalist designers were presented with six design challenges, which subsequently form the six worlds of the stage show. Three of these worlds are recurring – Aotearoa, Avant-garde and Open, and three are new for 2019 – Mythology, Transform and White.

WOW chief executive Gisella Carr says alongside the many talented New Zealand designers, the 2019 show has seen entrants hailing from all corners of the globe including Kazakhstan, Czechia and Belarus alongside regular contributing countries such as Australia, China, the United States and the United Kingdom.

Every year WOW receive more and more entries from around the globe, with 108 finalist garments from 22 countries and regions set to be on stage for this year’s WOW awards show season.

“We are proud to have strategic relationships with tertiary institutions and designers around the world, and it is an honour to showcase their work on our stage.

“The creative team has been busy designing the show for the past eighteen months, creating six different worlds, and now they have the exciting job of working the finalist garments into the show for another show-stopping performance.

“This is when the magic happens and it’s a joy to watch this unique collision of creativity come together.”

The first round of judging took place in Nelson over the weekend of July 5-7. This year’s judges include WOW Founder and resident judge Dame Suzie Moncrieff, designer James Dobson of Jimmy D, and artist Gregor Kregar.

The judging panel will also be joined by fashion activist and celebrity stylist B. Akerlund, Sir Richard Taylor, CEO and creative director of Weta Workshop and Cirque du Soleil’s creative intelligence team lead plus conceptrice Melissa Thompson.

The finalist garments will go through two more stages of the judging process, where they will be seen on stage with choreography, lighting and music ahead of opening night on September 26.


Auckland (9 finalist designers)

Ian Bernhard (two finalist entries)

Christopher Davis

Leanne Day

Lynne    Dunphy

Carolyn Gibson

Judith    Keith

Carmel Pollock

Shelley Scott (two finalist entries)

Jayne Boesley

Bay of Plenty (1 finalist designer)

Kerry Funnell

Palmerston North (1 finalist designers)

Jean Valentine

Hawkes Bay (3 finalist designers)

Keryn Whitney

Katherine Bertram

Adam Wade

Taranaki (1 finalist designer)

Sheela  Stoneman

Waikato (4 finalist designers)

Lisa Vanin

Jill Benson

Jenny Jack

Sacha Mail

Wellington (16 finalist designers)

Anna Baines

Kayla Christensen

Stephanie Cossens

Lyndal   Linton

Renee   Louie

Zach McDonald-Wright, Marie Wright, Taralee Freeman (three finalist designers in a design team)

Ali Middleton

Dylan Mulder

Louisa Marie Paterson

Vicky Robertson

Jenny Sutton

Josiene Van Maarseveen

Daniella Sasvári, Aaron La Roche (two finalist designers in a design team)

Nelson (2 finalist designers)

Meg Latham

Mary Turner

Central Otago (3 finalist designers)

Carolyn Laing, Debbie Paton (two finalist designers in a design team)

Ruth Arkless

Canterbury (3 finalist designers)

Tina Hutchison-Thomas

Loretta Sloan

Autumn Minnear


Australia (14 finalist designers)

Kirsten Fletcher

Erica Gray (two finalist entries)

Felicity Rose Hardy

Ildy Izso

Lesley   Marsh

Tara Morelos, Ahmad Mollahassani, Nelia Justo (three finalist designers in a design team)

R. R. Pascoe

Jill Perry

Nicola Rule

Hanna   Smith

Michelle Wade

Svenja XX

Austria (1 finalist designer)

Gudrun Bartenberger-Geyer

Belarus (1 finalist designers)

Volha Sniazhko

China (10 finalist designers)

Guo Tianzi

Lyu Lu, Yiheng Gu (two finalist designers in a design team)

Sun Ye, Yuxin Miao, Jue Yuan (three finalist designers in a design team)

Wang Haiwei (two finalist entries)

Xu Ran

Qiongwen Zhang

Chen Bingrou

China (Hong Kong) (1 finalist designers)

Lam Hoi Man Kinki

Czechia (2 finalist designers)

Denisa Pubalová, Jenny Sternwaldova (two finalist designers in a design team)

France (1 finalist designer)

Marnie Arnoul

Germany (2 finalist designers)

Anto Christ, Casio Ono (two finalist designers in a design team)

India (5 finalist designers)

Ashish   Dhaka, Sonika Khar (two finalist designers in a design team)

Akhilesh Gupta

Thingamla Adrianne Keishing

Shantanu Singh (two finalist entries)

Indonesia (1 finalist designer)

Rinaldy Yunardi (two finalist entries)

Ireland (1 finalist designers)

Monika Bogyos

Kazakhstan (2 finalist designers)

Bota Kirgizbayeva, Aya Kirgizbayeva (two finalist designers in a design team)

Netherlands (1 finalist designer)

Roosmarie Mittemeijer

Philippines (4 finalist designers)

Armando Rutaquio Jr, Jon Daniel Jasa, Charles David Almario (three finalist designers in a design team)

Russell Villafuerte

Poland (2 finalist designers)

Edyta Jermacz

Marcin Szłapka

Russian Federation (2 finalist designers)

Maria Amirova

Natalya Korneva

Singapore (2 finalist designers)

Dinh Hai Yen

Mihaleva Galina (two finalist entries)     

Sweden (1 finalist designer)

Pavlo Blinov

Taiwan (7 finalist designers)

Cao Qian Yi, Pei-Hsin Lu (two finalist designers in a design team)

Chiu Yu-Chia

Chang Yi-Wei     (two finalist entries)

Lin Zhi-Er

Yun Shan Lee

Zeng Ying-Syuan

United Kingdom (4 finalist designers)

Louise   Byford

Louise   Dyhrfort

Jack Irving (four finalist entries)

Anna von Hartitzsch

United States (8 finalist designers)

Lynn Christiansen

Grace DuVal

Natalia  Fedner

Dawn Mostow, Ben Gould (two finalist designers in a design team)

Robert  Reed

Nola Yergen, Brian Lapham (two finalist designers in a design team)

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