WOW - World of WearableArt


Delight of Light

Delight of Light

Ma Yuru & Wu Mengyue

Donghua University

2012 Supreme WOW Award Winner

2012 Open Section Winner






Delight of Light is a futuristic work of art inspired by ancient mortise and tenon building techniques, found in the beams, brackets, frames and struts of traditional Chinese architecture, as well as older buildings all over the world. Woodworkers have used the techniques for centuries, requiring no nails or glue, but instead structures are fastened with pocketed joints and dowelling, allowing the buildings to stand up through friction and pressure. Delight of Light is held together by shapes slotted into each other, and uses no other fastenings. 

‘We hoped to use our imagination to create a beautiful illusionary life like a little fairy’ 

The garment is inspired by postmodern computational architect Michael Hansmeyer, who uses algorithmic shapes to create hugely complex and geometrically intricate, yet delicate structures that are almost alien. The designers wanted to create a tough silhouette, with a sleek and streamlined design, and plenty of layering, mystery and illusion, whilst strong and powerful too. Though the piece cuts a striking figure onstage, the garment is light and flexible to wear, held together by tension. The slotted shapes create layers of light and shade that, when worn over its black suit, look as though a ghostly skeleton is shining through. The rear has sweeping shoulders and a headpiece, reminiscent of traditional Chinese eaves. The internal structure of Delight of Light has a strong sense of layering and extending. 

Watch Delight of Light on stage















More about the garment and the designers

It took six months to create Delight of Light. After the designers came up with the initial idea, they created hundreds of drawings and plans. Ma Yuru chose an opaque white plastic from an art shop that made her think of ice crystals, and they cut shapes for it with a knife – making lots of mistakes and having to start over many times. 

After winning the Supreme WOW Award, Ma Yuru used her share of the prize money to pay for her university living costs and also to study English. She is keen to keep improving her skills, and one day wants to establish her own fashion brand. 

In the same year, Ma Yuru & Wu Mengyue made WOW history when their second entry Revive won the Supreme WOW Award Runner-up, making them the first and only designers to win both the Supreme WOW Award + Runner-up prizes in a single Competition. 
















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