Waikēne is a land steeped in rich history. It is a place where Waitaha, our nation's first people, migrated through and left their mark with Aotearoa’s oldest art: 800-year-old cave drawings. It's a piece of land that's been transformed by Greg Summerton and his family in honour of his ancestors and for the benefit of his descendants. And importantly, it's in a part of New Zealand that we absolutely love. All that to say that this project had all the elements of a dream project right from the beginning, when Greg reached out to us to help him bring his vision for Waikēne to life.
Establishing the vision
Greg's vision is simple: he wants to create a business at Waikēne that celebrates the rich past of the area, and helps establish a better future for all New Zealand by showing what's possible on marginal land. Greg transformed Waikēne from an exploitative land use model that wasn't working, into a productive regenerative land use model which is paying dividends for the Summertons and the planet. As part of our work together, we helped crystallise that vision and ground it in values of Innovation, Sustainability, and People. We drew inspiration from 800-year-old Waitaha cave drawings found at Waikēne to illustrate a modern symbol for each value.
Letting the land do the talking
When you're presented with a project centred around a piece of immense natural beauty, the worst thing you could do is let design obscure that beauty. We kicked off this project with a site visit at Waikēne and knew, straight away, that it was imperative we captured the land - and artefacts found on it - through great photography.
“Not Another took the time to truly understand our vision for Waikēne, and the history of the land and people who’ve lived here, before embarking on the project. The attention-to-detail and care put into the Waikēne project has been exceptional and we’ve thoroughly enjoyed working with the Not Another team.”