Manatū Taonga Ministry for Culture and HeritageManatū Taonga Te Pūrongo ā-Tau 2019/20 Ministry for Culture and Heritage Annual Report
Submission # 167
Publication – Pukapuka
Identity – People & Culture
Identity – Place
Manatū Taonga supports Aotearoa New Zealand’s cultural sector in arts, culture, heritage, sport, and broadcasting, and funds agencies such as Creative New Zealand, Te Papa, the Film Commission and Radio New Zealand through NZ on Air. Some of the Ministry’s work involves researching the history of Aotearoa to produce digital resources and books; and being a kaitiaki of New Zealand’s most precious taonga. The Ministry purpose is ‘He ngākau titikaha, he hononga tangata: promoting a confident and connected culture’. Every year, Manatū Taonga works with a number of internal and external stakeholders to produce an annual report to present to parliament and make publicly available online.
In 2019, the Manatū Taonga annual report received a fresh treatment from the in-house design team. The brief was to create an annual report using the Ministry’s pre-existing brand guidelines, and was reflective of the Ministry’s values. The report also needed to be a place where Manatū Taonga staff saw the diversity of their mahi reflected with pride.
In 2020, we built upon the established aesthetic by introducing new elements and simplifying the style to strengthen the identity of Manatū Taonga and unify the pukapuka. It was important that the grid and layout rules we established could be used in years to come.
The concept of ‘Te Whare o Te Manatū Taonga’ was developed internally to show the organisational structure of the Ministry and house the Ministry’s bilingual job titles. Later, it provided the design narrative for the annual report to demonstrate the Ministry's mahi and value of the arts and culture sector to our national identity. The wharenui is the physical structure of the Māori worldview. The structure is commonly governed by the sky father, Ranginui, and the Earth Mother, Papatūānuku, and their offspring in the intangible. It seeks balance which provides an effective approach for engaging with Māori and Te Ao Māori. The concept expresses one of the core Ministry principles, ‘He hononga Tiriti: working collaboratively in line with Te Tiriti’.
To support the annual report’s central concept of the wharenui, careful consideration was given to the treatment of bilingual text. How the different languages are presented impacts differently on people’s attitudes towards that language, so it was vital that we upheld the Te Taura Whiri i te Reo Māori (Māori Language Commission) guidelines on the use of correct orthography and presentation of te reo Māori. Design choices were made with the intention of actively supporting the normalisation of te reo Māori.
The report’s simple and elegant design is led by the wharenui outline that wraps around the covers. The design is rendered with a triple line as a nod to haehae carving grooves. These haehae are continued throughout the report, where they integrate with photographs on title pages. With the wharenui applied to the covers, the spine of the pukupuka becomes te pou mataaho, the central pillar that holds it all together.
The annual report is broken into two distinct sections, defined by simple tinted pages that make it easy to navigate. The performance information at the front sits on a warm orange, whereas the back financials take on a more serious tone on white. Colourful, vivid photography is dispersed throughout to foreground the people who participate in the cultural sector of Aotearoa.
The design narrative recognises that each role within Manatū Taonga helps the wharenui stand. To champion te reo Māori, all headings within the report appear in te reo Māori and English, with te reo appearing first. The two languages are presented in a way that dissolves common visual hierarchies, so the languages are distinguishable but of equal value. Opening the pukapuka gives readers a sense of entering Te Whare o Te Manatū Taonga to learn of the diverse range of mahi that is featured inside. The wharenui on the cover (a structure that often houses manuhiri – both in a physical and metaphorical sense) also alludes to ideas of the home, which is fits with the end of the public financial year being defined by Covid-19 alert levels and the whole Ministry working from home.
The design of the annual report is grounded by the place in which Manatū Taonga works to support – Aotearoa New Zealand. Our design approach centres the unique worldview of iwi Māori and treats te reo Māori with care to reflect its status as a precious national taonga.
Credits & Collaborators: Designer - Katie Cheer Blank - Project lead – Johnny Crawford Blank - Advisor, Translator, Editor – Lee Belk Blank - Advisor – Matene Haimona Blank - Editor – David Green
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