Oct 3, 2015

New Zealand [five finalist proposals]

This November 20th, a new step in New Zealand flag referendum will be started: choosing the design that will compete with current flag the next.

There were four designs originally announced, but a fifth design was added.

The first design was made by Alofi Kanter:

I think it's pleasing for the eyes, and a big pro is the similarity with traditional silver fern flag, used by NZ in sports and other contexts. The silver fern is New Zealand's national plant and, possibly, its main national symbol. Maybe, due to its inspiration in NZ government branding, it looks too logo-ish.

The second design, by Kyle Lockwood was surfaced around 2003 and, having gained much popularity since then, it's place in final five is no surprise:

The key for its suceess is the link to current flag and british red-white-blue, but still showing the silver fern.

The third is by Kyle Lockwood, too. This design replaces red with black, as black and white are (together with red ochre) the national colors of the country, being a viable mix of current national flag and silver fern flag.

The fourth design was presented by Andrew Fyfe:

This design contains a reference to koru, a germinating silver fern that's an important symbol in Māori culture. It also resembles a wave, a cloud (one New Zealand's Māori name is Aotearoa, "the land of long white cloud") and ram's horns. It's my least favorite design of the five.

Originally, the final shortlist should countain only four flags, but a fifth design was add by popular pressure. This design was presented by Aaron Dustin:

This design, nicknamed "Red Peak Flag", has many inspiration, among them New Zealand's geography, the Union Jack and Māori creation myth (also represented in Tino rangatiratanga). Curiously, it's similar to a flag that won a private contest some months ago.

I like some of those designs more than others, but I think any of them can compete with NZ current flag with own merits. Whichever flag will the referendum, I'll probably have already reviewed it —pretty efficient, right?

Comments and suggestions are welcome.

This post should be posted in September, but I had technical issues. I'm sorry.


  1. These desgins are very uninspiring and seem to ignore the history of the islands.

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