The finalists for the International Woolmark Prize 2023 have been announced, and this year they are stronger than ever. With a lineup consisting of Robyn Lynch, RHUDE (Rhuigi Villaseñor), Lagos Space Program, BLUEMARBLE, A. ROEGE HOVE, Paolina Russo, MAXXIJ and MARCO RAMBALDI, this year’s finalists were ready to explore the theme of “Dialogue” . intended to offer a “letter to and for the next generation”.
With this in mind, The Woolmark Company aims to bring these talented young designers and the industry together, as it has done since 1936. Past winners, such as Saul Nash, Cottweiler, Edward Crutchley, Richard Malone and BODE, have all gone on to explore how their clothing and design talent can appeal to the younger, more conscious generation, and the same goes for this year’s hopeful finalists.
John Roberts, managing director of The Woolmark Company, said of the award:
“This group of finalists represents the next generation of creative game-changers, all of whom want to design fashion for a better future. As the fashion and textile industry continues to evolve in an ever-changing landscape, we hope our support during the International Woolmark Prize will inspire and propel the design and business strategies of our eight finalists. I would like to personally congratulate these finalists on behalf of Australian wool growers and also thank the Advisory Board for helping to decide on our final eight.”
To win, the finalists are judged on their designs by a jury. This year they are due to produce six Merino wool looks as part of their Fall/Winter 2022 collection or a standalone IWP2023 capsule, both of which aim to emphasize the durability and versatility of the material. The award includes an initial sum of $60,000 AUD (approximately £33,500 GBP or $40,000 USD), as well as mentorship from industry leaders, including Holli Rogers, Chief Brand Officer, Farfetch; Gabriella Karefa-Johnson, Global Fashion Editor-at-Large, Fashion and stylist; Sara Sozzani Maino, Scouting and Educational Initiatives Advisor Fashion Italy and international brand ambassador Camera Nazionale della Moda Italiana; Sinéad Burke, educator and lawyer; Shaway Yeh, Founder YehYehYeh and Group Style Editorial Director Modern Media Group; and Tim Blanks, editor-in-chief, Company of fashion.
One finalist (the next winner) will receive $200,000 AUD (approximately £112,000 GBP or $132,000 USD), while another finalist will receive $100,000 AUD through the Karl Lagerfeld Award for Innovation, and all finalists will have the chance to be saved at leading retailers around the world thanks to the International Woolmark Prize Retailer Network.
Stay tuned to Hypebeast for more news on the prize, with winners announced in April 2023.
Elsewhere, here’s your recent rundown of fashion industry news.