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Nothing is off the table at Dunedin Fine Art Center's wearable art show

DUNEDIN

If you think this August has been a hot one, wait until the Dunedin Fine Art Center's Wearable Art 11 arrives.

With a new exhibit (it's all about the bra) to complement the over-the-top fashions, the forecast for this year's show is scorching haute.

"Outrageous, irreverent and elegant," proclaimed Catherine Bergmann, the center's curatorial director, when describing this year's runway looks.

It all takes place Saturday with a 7 p.m. pre-party featuring groove man DJ Muggles Malone at the art center, an 8:30 p.m. runway show at the adjacent community center, and an after-party in the aftermath with the psych-pop band Luxury Mane.

Tickets are $20 each for general admission (standing) or $40 and $75 for reserved seating. Score your ticket as soon as possible as the crowd-pleaser sells out each year.

DFAC's new development director, Linda Hamilton, is producing the event with the assistance of Bergmann and veteran producer Colin Bissett.

The past 10 years have featured novel designs that employed surprises like raw meat, condoms and pyrotechnics. It's anyone's guess what will appear on this year's runway, but nothing is off the table.

"These artists are more than fashion designers, they are eccentric visionaries," said Bergmann.

Returning favorites include balloon-master Mark Byrne, Kina Kouture, Melissa Dolce, the Garden Fairies, Johnny Hunt, Lina Teixeira, and New Zealand's World of Wearable Art award-winner, Julian Hartzog, who engineered a disappearing dress last year.

New designers include Stephanie Arner, Jeanne Halle, Lily Monk, Shelby Pogue and the team of Michael Ian Anzures and DemiGod. Hair and makeup is provided by Salon GW and LaPosh.

Creativity will be busting out all over with newly added side show "Triple B: Bizarre, Bodacious Bras," showcasing designer-decorated braziers on display in the Gamble Family Gallery.

Bring your own bra or embellish one of those furnished by the center with jewels, glitter, feathers and such at the hands-on station.

An exhibition of mythical paintings by Steven Kenny, called "Robed in Fable," will be showcased as well.

Lina Teixeira, a registered nurse with a lifelong interest in art and fashion, will be showing looks from around the world, all spun with her traditionally far-out twists.

Her journey began when she attended her first wearable art show three years ago.

"I was so enthused," she said. "I decided I was going to try (to be a designer) and I have never looked back."

She was accepted the following year and her runway creations helped launch a second career for her. She recently opened Studio 617 on Cleveland Street where she makes wearable art for advertising, branding and entertainment.

"I was honored and humbled to be accepted into the wearable art show and I will try to always be a part of the Dunedin Fine Art Center's shows," she said. "I owe them."

Reach Terri Bryce Reeves at treeves@tampabay.rr.com.

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