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Must-See Cosplays from Across the Globe at the World Cosplay Summit

5 Minute Read
Oct 12 2022

Curator Diana Tolin’s recent exhibit for the Japanese Embassy in Washington D.C. is breaking new ground in the world of cosplay.

One of the most beautiful and sacred aspects of cosplay is its ability to connect people. The art of cosplay is based entirely on the heart connections of people around the world who love fandoms. Whether a cosplayer creates a simple closet cosplay or creates a screen-accurate work of art, cosplay is for EVERYONE. An amazing group of cosplayers has met to shine a light on the world cosplay community. This week we’re featuring their story. We’re talking about the 20-year celebration of the World Cosplay Summit.

The Crafting Global Friendships Exhibit in Washington D.C. at the Japanese Information and Culture Center

Cosplayers from the World Cosplay Summit

Check out the official World Cosplay Summit 2022 video for WCS Stage Competitors, by Rescue the Princess:


What is the World Cosplay Summit, you might ask? I’m so glad you did. The World Cosplay Summit is an international cosplay event focused on cultural exchange. It is hosted in Japan each year (in 2020 it was held online to accommodate for the pandemic) and focuses on the love of Japanese anime, manga, and videogame characters.

Yharnam from Bloodbourne cosplay by JHart Designs award-winning 2019 World Cosplay Summit Submission

Through a series of national-based competitions, each participating country sends its best cosplayers to compete together in one of the most supportive, positive environments around. Here are the fundamental principles of the World Cosplay Summit:

Principles by WCS President Tokumaru Oguri


The World Cosplay Summit

Each year, cosplayers from around the world gather together in Nagoya City and Aichi Prefecture to celebrate their creations. There are stage performances, detailed competition elements, and some fantastic prizes. The event always produces some note-worthy collaborations. The cosplay art that comes from the World Cosplay Summit is breathtaking. It is full of life and passion, and a connection to culture that is refreshing.

Diana Tolin with Oguri (World Cosplay Summit Owner) and the 2019 WCS Champions K Cosplay and A.K. Wirru

To celebrate this love of culture and connection, curator Diana Tolin has partnered with the Japanese Embassy in Washington D.C. to create a special exhibit about the WCS. Coming through years of images and cosplays, the team assembled a gorgeous collection of cosplays to display in the Embassy. This week we are featuring a unique look behind the scenes at the exhibit.

Diana Tolin giving the Curators Talk for the Exhibit

Cosplay brings people together. Events like the World Cosplay Summit bring people all over the WORLD together. Through pandemics and untold hardships, the love of crafting and fandoms continues to thrive. It is through events like the WCS and exhibits like Crafting Global Friendships that show how hard work and passion can fuel our creativity and unite people.

These costumes, created for WCS 2009 by Dia and Ambiencechaser, were made by the first US Team to win an award at WCS Japan

We hope to see many more events like this in the future so that the next generation of artists, crafters, and dreamers can all find their time in the spotlight.

Exhibit Information

Crafting Global Friendships Exhibit

Begin at the Beginning- the Origins of the World Cosplay Summit.
“Culture and cosplay are now intertwined- they are an infinity loop that Japan has sort of gifted us. So much Japanese culture exists in anime, manga, and other media that when you find some new comic or animation there is an incredibly high chance you will find something that ties directly back to some kind of historical or artistic aspect of Japanese Culture.”-Diana Tolin

The 2020 World Cosplay Summit transitioned to online to keep the magic going
“Every piece you see, every photo of a cosplayer who gave their all to build and perform in the World Cosplay Summit is art.”-Diana Tolin

AplacaAsh poses with her award-winning ‘Paradise Kiss’ Cosplay from 2015
” I firmly believe that everybody can cosplay. I thank the World Cosplay Summit for mirroring that sentiment in their event in Japan and for, even if we occasionally falter, moving the needle of cosplay progress forward so cosplayers of the world know that they also have a home in Nagoya.”-Diana Tolin

Head to the JICC in Washington D.C until November 3rd to see this exhibit in person!

~Join us next week for more Cosplay Coverage~

Have a Cosplay question you would like Mayhem’s Muse to answer?

Know a Cosplayer you’d like to see featured? Send an email here!


Author: Jennifer Larsen
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