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Asia’s top models come together

Asia’s top models come together
Models from 15 Asian nations came to Seoul Olympic Park for the 2012 Asia Model Festival Awards (AMFA) for two days from January 17 to 18. Hosted by the Korea Model Association, the award ceremony provides a chance for Asian nations to communicate with each other by sharing and exchanging their own pop culture and fashion trends. Participants gathered from nations including China, Japan, Thailand, Hong Kong and Singapore, under the slogan “Asia is One.”.

Representative models, singers, actors, and major figures in the fashion and beauty industry for each nation were brought together for the seventh annual AMFA. The largest model festival in the world and the only event of its kind in Asia, this year’s AMFA gathered around 4,000 domestic and international guests in the event hall.

As part of the festival, various events were scheduled on January 17, the eve of the AMFA. The focus of the festival has been expanded this year to include beauty treatments, previously only emphasizing the two elements of model and fashion. Unlike the typical fashion shows in which models simply walk up and down the catwalk, the festival brought life to the stage. Models engaged in kickboxing and yoga on the runway, and danced with monster make-up on their faces. A body-painting art performance also brought extra color to the event.

A fashion show organized by Korean designer Lea Seong. The clothes are made of proteins extracted from organic milk.

The main awards ceremony on January 18 started with a fashion show organized by Korean designer Lea Seong who runs a business in China. One of the surprises presented at the show was a fabric made of proteins extracted from organic milk.

Child model Byun Ha-rin survived among 25,000 competitors.

Hye Park (left); Lie Sang-bong (right)

Jung Il-woo (left); Lee Yun-hee (right)

Singer Kara receives the Asia Star Award (Photo: Yonhap News) 

The awards were given to two groups; professional models and celebrities active in drama, movies, music, and fashion. The best professional models were selected through a fierce competition. The celebrity winners were voted on by the models. Fashion designer Lie Sang-bong received the Achievement Award for International Cultural Exchange. Model Hye Park received the Fashion Model Award.  The Popular Artist award was bestowed on BEAST, Jay Park, MBLAQ, and IU. The Fashion Star Awards went to actors Lee Yun-hee and Jung Il-woo, both of whom enjoyed successful modeling careers prior to their debuts in the entertainment industry. The Asia Star Award was given to actor Choi Ji-woo and singer Kara.  

A Pink

K-pop stars such as A Pink, MBLAQ, and IU performed between presentations of the ceremony. With a large number of fans present, the hall reverberated with the thunderous cheers.

Jin Jong-wook, an expert advisor for the Korea Model Association, noted in an interview that Hallyu, despite its far-reaching popularity, has yet to influence mainstream culture. 
“For the Hallyu craze to translate into a deeper engagement with Korean culture, quality content is essential,” said Jin. “With innovative designs and an emphasis on understated, tasteful beauty, Korea’s modeling industry has already captivated the Asian market, and it has definite potential to appeal in lasting ways to the rest of the world.”

The festival will be aired domestically on SBS Plus on January 23 and internationally on Arirang TV, which will be seen in 127 countries. It was also filmed by overseas organizations and will be broadcasted on major terrestrial networks from 30 Asian nations including GMA TV of the Philippines.

By Lee Seung-ah Staff Writer

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Featured Topics : 2012 Asia Model Festival Awards, Korea Model Association, Korea culture, event in Korea, Korean beauty industry, Korean model, IU, Kara, Korean celebrity, Choi Ji-woo, Lee Yun-hee, Jung Il-woo, Jay Park, Lie Sang-bong, Korea cultural exchange

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