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Source: Heritage New Zealand

Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga is delighted its new website has been chosen as a finalist in the Designers Institute of New Zealand Best Awards. 
The website, created in partnership with developers Tribal Aotearoa, launched in March 2023, and highlights the organisation’s breadth of work and its bi-cultural ethos.
The awards recognise exceptional achievements in graphic, spatial, product, digital, and motion design.
Director of Organisational Development Roxane Gajadhar says the team are honoured by the accolade which recognises the depth of thought and careful design that went into the project. “To see the website acknowledged as a finalist in these prestigious awards, is testament to the remarkable collaborative efforts of internal experts and the creative team at Tribal Aotearoa.
“The result is a groundbreaking design infused with our organisational values and offering a fresh way to explore, learn and engage with Aotearoa New Zealand’s place-based heritage.”
Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga Kaihautū and distinguished artist Dean Whiting, provided creative guidance throughout the design process to create the visually rich and fit-for-purpose site.
“The ‘Pouhere Taonga’ part of our name was chosen as something that is unique to this organisation and means ‘the pou that binds taonga together’, and this quickly became a focus for the design,” says Whiting. “We know that for many ‘heritage’ is often associated with a building, where pou or pillars are an essential structural element to create built form, and in heritage landscapes pouwhenua and memorials are the focus to remember and retell our stories.
“We view this new website as our digital pouhere – a place where stories and histories are kept safe and shared with communities, but also a meeting place where people come together to share, celebrate, discuss, and decide,” says Whiting.
Accented with contemporary pops of colour, this site represents a new appearance for forward-looking Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga. The rich palate has been drawn from the unique natural environment of Aotearoa, with an acknowledgement of the wide range of colours Māori use in their decorative arts.
Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga is proud to be selected among the range worthy finalists.
“As we celebrate this significant achievement, we also acknowledge the growing influence of Te Ao Māori – culture, stories, and arts – in design. We are honoured to contribute to this cultural movement, drawing inspiration and shaping a bicultural direction that echoes our whakatauākī: ‘Tairangahia a tua whakarere; Tātakihia ngā reanga o āmuri ake nei. Honouring the past; Inspiring our future’,” expresses Whiting.
The Best Awards is an annual event that recognises excellence across various design disciplines. Established in the mid-seventies, the awards serve as a platform to showcase and honour outstanding design achievements in Aotearoa New Zealand while fostering growth within the design community through evaluation by an international panel of experts.
Tairangahia a tua whakarere; Tātakihia ngā reanga o āmuri ake nei | Honouring the past; Inspiring the future
Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga is an autonomous Crown Entity, and the leading national historic heritage agency for Aotearoa New Zealand. Their vision is to identify, protect and promote heritage – Kia mōhiotia atu, kia tiakina, kia hāpaingia ā tātau taonga tuku iho.
The agency works to engage with communities, develop partnerships, and provide resources for those interested in exploring, learning, and engaging with cultural heritage. To learn more, visit