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Future takes Artistic Turn for Green MP

Future takes Artistic Turn for Green MP

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The Emperor's Entourage, Mike Ward, Nelson Winner of the American Express Open Section and the 2005 Montana Supreme WOW Award.


A Green Party MP who looks set to lose his Nelson seat, may not have the party vote but got the artistic thumbs up from the Judges of the 2005 Montana World of WearableArt Awards.

Mike Ward has won the Montana Supreme WOW Award for his entry ‘The Emperor’s Entourage’.

The work consists of two large wearable canvasses and is a play on the Hans Christian Anderson tale, The Emperor’s New Clothes. The front depicts what the wearer sees in the mirror when they dress up in their glad rags, but from behind we see them as they are ‘in all their plump gorgeousness.’ The Emperor’s Entourage also won the American Express Open section. As the supreme Montana WOW® Awards winner, Mike receives $10,000, a $10,000 international travel prize from American Express, and a Hoglund Art Glass Trophy valued at $2000.

When Mike learned his days as an MP could be over, he commented he had been an artist in a former life, as he attended art school in the sixties intending to paint and instead ‘came out a sculptor and maker of frivolous finery’

Mike says painting people without the benefit of models, with painting skills that are a tad past their use by date, during a very full time, if not temporary parliamentary career, ‘presented a unique set of challenges’

Mike Ward won the Mac’s Man Unleashed Section of the 2001 Montana WOW Awards with “Sir Edmonds” a play on the Edmonds Baking Powder claim which involved an aviation based design.

Mike is a well known figure in Nelson, selling hand made jewellery from a cart, and riding his unique low slung cycle which he recently rode from Kaitaia to Bluff. A former Nelson City Councillor, Mike Ward has also taken part in every Coast to Coast endurance race for the past 23 years. 2005 is the first time the Montana WOW Awards have been held in Wellington, at the Events Centre, Queens Wharf. A capacity crowd of more than 3,500 which included the Prime Minister and other VIPs and dignitaries was treated to a fabulous feast of entertainment.

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Wellingtonopoly by Sue Cederman, Nelson Winner of the Wales & MacKinlay Silk Award


The show featured a lavish array of more than 170 garments, woven between a feast of entertainment, from a human flame belching volcano, bird people who appear to have stepped from the canvas of a Bill Hammond painting to ethereal silver angels floating metres above a snow covered stage. Even Elvis flew in from Vegas to rock the crowd in a pulsating Scenic Circle Hotels Bizarre Bra Section.

The shows continue in Wellington this weekend and next weekend.


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