Threaded Magazine: Adopting a Culturally Connected Approach

  • Fiona Grieve AUT Auckland University of Technology
  • Kyra Clarke Threaded Media Ltd
  • Marcos Steagall  (Translator) Auckland University of Technology
Keywords: Mahi tahi (Collaboration), Design Community, Cultural, Mātauranga Māori, Publication Design


It has been ten years since the concept of the Publication Platform has been published in the special edition of the Scope Journal ISSN (online version; 1177-5661). The term ‘Publication Platform’ was introduced in the Practice Report, The Site of Publication in Contemporary Practice. This article surveyed a series of publication projects analysing distinctive editorial models as venues for discussion, collaboration, presentation of practice, and reflection. In this context, the term Publication Platform is employed to describe a space for a series of distinctive editorial modes. The platform considers printed matter as a venue for a diversity of discourse and dissemination of ideas, expanding the meaning and boundaries of printed media through a spectrum of publishing scenarios. The Publication Platform positions printed spaces as sites to reflect on editorial frameworks, content, design practices, and collaborative methodologies. One of the central ideas to the report was the role of collaboration to lead content, examining how creative relationships and media production partnership, affect editorial practice and design outcomes. Ten years after, the Publication Platform has evolved and renewed with emergent publishing projects to incorporate a spectrum of practice responsive to community, experimentation, interdisciplinarity, critical wiring, creativity, cultural production, contemporary arts, and craft-led discourse. This paper presents a case study of ‘Threaded Magazine’ as an editorial project and the role of its culturally connected approach. This study uses the term ‘culturally connected approach’ to frame how Threaded Magazine embodies, as a guiding underlying foundation for each issue, the three principles of Te Tiriti o Waitangi: Participation, Protection and Partnership. This presentation reflects on how these principals connect to who Threaded Magazine are collectively as editors and designers, and determined by who we associate with, partner, and collaborate with. A key factor that influenced Threaded Magazine to adopt a more culturally connected approach arose by the invitation to participate in the international publication entitled Project 16/2, commissioned by Fedrigoni Papers for the Frankfurt Bookfair, in Germany. The Project 16/2 created an opportunity for a process of editorial self-discovery. This trajectory translated the tradition of oral storytelling into graphic language, conveying the essence (te ihi) of who we were. The visuality and tactility of the printed media set a format for Threaded Magazine to focus on Aotearoa’s cultural heritage, original traditions, and narratives. This paper overviews the introduction of a kaupapa for Issue 20, the ‘New Beginnings’ edition and process of adhering to tikanga Māori and Mātauranga Māori while establishing a particular editorial kawa (protocol) for the publication. The influence and collaboration with cultural advisory rōpū (group) Ngā Aho, kaumātua and kuia (advisors) will elaborate on the principle of participation. Issue 20 connected Threaded Magazine professionally, spiritually, physically, and culturally with the unique identity and landscape of Indigenous practitioners at the forefront of mahi toi (Māori Contemporary art) across Aotearoa. Special Edition, Issue 21, in development, continues to advance a culturally connected approach working with whānau, kaiwhatu (weavers), tohunga whakairo (carvers), kaumātua and kuia to explore cultural narratives, connections, visually through an editorial framework.