THREADED MEDIA LIMITED 7 Threaded Special Ed.21: The Te Pō & Te Ao Mārama Issue

  • Pou Auaha / Creative Director
    Fiona Grieve
  • Ringatoi Matua / Design Director
    Kyra Clarke
  • Ngā Kaimahi / Team Members
    George Hajian, David Coventon
  • Kaitautoko / Contributors
    Maree Sheehan, Tatiana Tavares, Marcos Steagall, Tepora Kauwhata, Ataria Gibbons, Karyn Gibbons, Kawiti Waetford, Jesse Waetford

Threaded is a people-focused international publication about practice. Editorial strategies are used as a critical device to explore the nature of interviews and the dialogue that exists between a practitioner and their mahi (practice). Central to the project is the role of collaboration to lead content, embracing how cultural advisors, and creative partnerships affect kawa (protocol), values and concepts in editorial practice.

Initial thematic concepts for Ed.21 grew out of collective responses to the physical, emotional, and spiritual impacts of COVID-19 pandemic. Invited manuhiri (practitioners) were offered four double-page spreads to kōrero (discuss) and reflect on how they creatively navigated and overcame the challenges of social separation and cultural disconnection. In parallel, Threaded’s production partner, Fedrigoni Paper gifted stock from their newly released ‘Black Box’ Book set and shipped premium product from Italy to support this kaupapa.

The te ihi (essence) of this special edition is the narrative of whakapapa, of connection and genealogy between humans and all ecosystems as a holistic and integrated system. The continuum and importance of the separation of Ranginui and Papatūānuku and the varying stages of light being released into the world, ko tēnei tīmatanga o Te Ao (in the beginning) are introduced as the underpinning concept. The structure of this pukapuka (edition) is based on the thematic of the Māori creation story with the waiata ‘Ko te Pū’ as the navigational framework.

Threaded Ed. 21 incorporates visual, augmented, and sonic design queues to communicate the multi-layered beginning story of Te Kore (the void of potential, nothingness), Te Pō (the night realms and darkness), Te Wheiao (coming into the light) and Te Ao Mārama (the realm of light). Visual motifs and colour are an important signifier to communicate the metamorphosis of time and space, of the realm of Te Kore — which operates as the Z-fold cover — and binds, Te Pō and Te Ao Mārama connecting them metaphorically into two pukapuka. The dark shades on one Z-fold cover transition into warm hues symbolising coming into being and the light beginning to break through.

Sonic artistry and AR animated vignettes were activated through printed motifs and incorporate hau (breath of life) into the printed page. Structurally, the AR pages open with a chanted karakia and end with a mihi, creating a balance that acknowledges customary cultural protocols and dualities such as male/female, light/dark, above/below and seen/unseen. The AR sonic experiences when scanned direct the audience to the Instagram platform, expanding the materiality of printed matter. This approach afforded distinct modes of cognitive processing that combined the visual and the linguistic, the spatial and the temporal, sound, and virtual reality to graphically symbolize the many layers and dimensions of things unseen: the realm between being and non-being.