On Friday night, Tania & Martin from Tania & Martin design, attended the 2014 BEST Design Awards at the Viaduct Events Centre, Auckland, along with 998 other people, in the hope of winning recognition for their design of Taka Ki Ro Wai.
The BEST Design Awards are unique in the way they honour design. Run by the Designers Institute of New Zealand, they don’t have a singular award for first, second and third. They award as many places as they believe deserve it in a section − or not at all if the standard isn’t met.
For our section, the Nga Aho Award, there were actually three gold pin winners, a silver and two bronzes from a field of eleven finalists, with the judges acknowledging the high standard within the category. The gold pin, their equivalent to a medal, went to ourselves, Studio Alexander, and architectural firm JASMAX (the architects most notably recognised for Te Papa Tongarewa) who for this nomination, had designed the building Te Uru Taumatua for Tuhoe in Taneatua). From amongst the three gold pins awarded, one supreme category winner was chosen as the purple pin winner, which was richly deserved by JASMAX.
We received our pin together with a winners certificate from Te Puni Kokiri Tamaki Makaurau head Pauline Kingi.
Though it was Tania & Martin in attendance, the application was about Taka Ki Ro Wai, and the collective strengths of the team responsible for it’s creation.
Author Keri didn’t accompany us this time, as she is due in Auckland this coming weekend for the Toi Maori Maori Writers Hui 2014, but we called her soon after the announcement and shouted the good news down the phone over the loud celebrations going on in the background.
Attending these events is essential to keep people talking about Taka Ki Ro Wai, because you’re nothing if you’re not in the news. While you create the book with the hope that it will be liked, awards such as this and the NZ Post Children’s Book Awards are the kudos that provide impetus for book sales.
As we’d like to produce more books like this one, the book itself needs to sell to help make that happen. That was why we targeted these awards. Without them, we could be faced with boxes of books gathering dust. This is a push to get the remaining copies of the book out into new homes and into the hands of eager readers, both the young and older, the fluent and the learner.
Submitted by Martin D Page, designer of Taka Ki Ro Wai, by Keri Kaa