Meara Acheson-Kappely Hakari

  • Tauira / Student
    Meara Acheson-Kappely
  • Kaiako / Lecturer
    Denise Narciso

Hākari is a collaborative event organized by two Communication Design students, which showcased the stories of Otago food producers.
Held on October 27th, 2022 at Otago Polytechnic, this ticketed event immersed attendees in street food experiences, videography, and design installations, all while emphasizing the use of local ingredients from our featured suppliers. In collaboration with the polytechnics Food Design Institute and Art School we were able to encapsulate a strong connection between
design and kai. Living in a bicultural Aotearoa, it was essential that we acknowledged and followed Tikanga throughout this project.
Hākari revolved around four essential Tikanga values: Manaakitanga, Kotahitanga, Mohiotanga, and Kaitiakitanga. Through Manaakitanga, we shared food and producer origin stories, fostering collaboration amongst our team, local food producers, and guests, as Kotahitanga united us all. Kaitiakitanga allowed us to give back and express gratitude to our
local food producers, while celebrating their produce. Mohiotanga encouraged learning and sharing knowledge amongst each other. The event was broken into two spaces Ako (learning) space and Wāhanga (sharing) space. Short films
of our local food producers were projected onto frames joined together with our branding to form continuous connection that led our guests in a one-way flow through the exhibition and onto the sharing / kai space.
Highlighting the deep relationship between local food producers and the whenua, Hākari aimed to promote kai sovereignty and enable the sharing of knowledge from producers to guests. The goal was to empower guests to make self-determined choices for the health and well-being of their whānau.
“Hākari” translates to "Festival | Celebration", perfectly capturing the essence of this event, as feasts hold significant importance in Māori culture, symbolizing hospitality and connection. To represent these values in a visual manner, we communicated through our branding. ‘The Squiggle’ used is an extentsion of a rectangle from the Hākari logo, jumping off the page. It represents an emotional and literal journey that a person may face in life at OtagoPolytechnic. ‘The Squiggle’ bends and curves with life's many challenges and changes, it
flows from page to page and connects once piece of a story to another. With text or imagery throughout our brand, ‘The Squiggle’ is as a story telling device to lead the viewer to information. The squiggle was paired with symbols and a bright colour palette to bring these ideas to life. Brand collateral was applied across a wide range of applications including traditional branding, tickets, posters, a social media campaign (, physical exhibition material and graphics inside and
outside of the polytechnic hub.

This project was challenging as it transversed across design, event and project
management, as well as marketing and sales, which allowed us to grow useful skills inunfamiliar areas. Hākari highlighted the importance of collaboration, unity, sharing and relationships which was an appropriate celebration to the end of our degree.Ngā mihi nui kia koutou katoa to the tauira of the Otago Polytechnic (Te Pukenga) Food Design Institute and School of Art for their contributions.