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Chapter Chairs

Nick Kapica
Jo Bailey, Massey University
Jo Bailey
Explore SEGD content about your city

SEGD Global Design Awards: Wellington

Urban Tales Shadow Typography, Massey University, College of Creative Arts, Katie Bevin
Urban Tales Shadow Typography
Makara Peak Mountain Bike Park Wayfinding
Makara Peak Mountain Bike Park Wayfinding


Alt Group
Special Group
Strategy Design  & Advertising
Studio Alexander
Studio Catherine Griffiths
SV Associates
Warren and Mahoney
We Love, Inc.


New Zealand Sign and Display Association

Design Schools

College of Creative Arts - Massey University
Faculty of Architecture and Design, Victoria University


Museum of Transport and Technology (MOTAT)
Torpedo Bay Navy Museum
Voyager - New Zealand Maritime Museum


Nick Kapica | 0064 (0)22 621 8628

Wellington Blog

DJ Thomas Forbes at Laundry closing out the SEGD OFF GRID 17 event

You keep kicking yourself and asking "I wonder if I should have gone to OFF GRID this year?"

The answer is a resounding YES! From all the participants.


Imagine an SEGD event where:


  • It took four to six days to travel from your starting city to the conference—as far as I know, no one hitch-hiked there.
  • Every session was held in a different location around the city of Wellington—in stairwells, café’s, museums and even a planetarium. Uwe Brückner of Atelier Brückner collaborated with planetarium techs to create an amazing 360-degree immersive presentation of his work.


Every Session was at a different Venue around Wellington, making for a great way to see many places in a day

  • There were available chairs sometimes, but definitely not all of the time—hey, they're an overrated convenience of the corporate world.
  • Participants were walking all day between locations, presenting more opportunities to explore great coffee, local beers and fresh food of New Zealand—and explore we did!


OFF GRID 17 Walking from session sto session means experiencing the cities street art!

  • You would get to participate in collaborative activities—we all love participatory design and there's no better way to get an international perspective on local projects.
  • You would travel by bus halfway around Wellington Harbor just to have lunch—well, not just to have lunch—the view was amazing and we saw yet another side of the city.
  • You would travel 240 miles to see a town someone told you was “interesting”—and discover a signage paradise.


Whanganui, New Zealand, a small town with a big penchant for signage.

  • The closing party had not one, but two DJs.
  • View giant 2.4-scale lifelike statues made by the WETA workshop and hear their stories of the World War 1 Gallipoli campaign in the Te Papa Museum


SEGD OFF GRID 17 kicks off at the Te Papa Museum in Wellington, NZ

These were some of the things that made up the experiential journey that over 100 SEGDers from all over the world embarked on to explore what makes up Experiential Graphic Design at OFF GRID in New Zealand and Australia in February 2017. This gathering was a prototype for a new sort of event designed to encourage you to engage in and question what makes up the experiences that connect people to place.

The key to any meaningful experience is, of course, becoming immersed in and fully engaged in the activities.

The SEGD OFF GRID 17: Experience Wellington was an immersive, engaging experience like nothing else SEGD has ever done (Okay, along the lines of Cranbrook maybe).

"Nick and Jo deserve accolades for pulling together this amazing content. It was wonderful to experience the museums, coffee shops, pubs and connect with design professionals from around the globe. Kudos to the Wellington chapter!" said John Lutz, President, SEGD. We all know Nick can get things done, but starting a new job at the City of Wellington at the same time as organizing and hosting a conference? Nick, you're a machine!

The OFF GRID 17 spaces where all interesting and varied

Experiencing this event felt nothing like a prototype, though. It felt like a polished experience, thanks to the amazing organization of the SEGD Wellington Chapter Co-chairs, Nick Kapica and Jo Bailey with help from Johannes Bay, a graduate student who turned down a job to help host the event. Credit also needs to go out to all the students from Massey University and the design community in Wellington who all helped to make this event happen.

To get the full scope of the involvement, consider that there were four events a few days before the main event in Auckland, Christchurch, Sydney and Brisbane. OFF GRID 17 succeeded in activating the entire region!

The SEGD chapter in Brisbane, lead by Despina Macris of Dot Dash and Jack Bryce of the City of Gold Coast Urban Design Department, held a big event kicking-off the OFF GRID 17 experiential journey in grand style with talks on the future development of Brisbane and the Gold Coast and the upcoming Commonwealth Games. If you want an example of doing a Twitter campaign right, just take a look at how Dot Dash ran the Brisbane segment of OFF GRID 17!

DotDash host the Brisbane starting point for SEGD's OFF GRID 17

The new SEGD Sydney chapter (officially opened at the event by President John Lutz and CEO Clive Roux) lead by Carlo Giannasca of Urbanite, part of the Frost*Collective and Nick Bannikoff of BrandCulture, introduced a crowd of over 100 designers to how augmented reality (AR) can be used to excite and sell people on new spatial experiences well before they come into being.

Events in Christchurch and Auckland followed two days later, kicking-off the New Zealand part of the conference and giving attendees a couple of days to make their way to Wellington.

Attendees came from all over the world eventually converged on Wellington to share their journeys and experiences.

Signage on the way to the OFF GRID 17 Conference

Nils Wiberg of Gagarin started in Iceland and took the adventure most to heart visiting Sydney, Auckland before making his way to Wellington, after which he went on to kayaking through the New Zealand outback for three days. Nils, we hope you made it back to Iceland safely.

For a flavor of the event, read SEGD Board member Stephen Minning’s account of the experience.

Participants came from the U.S., England and Germany through Dubai, experiencing an altogether different reality there before experiencing the coffee-soaked culture of Wellington.

Stephen Minning and Bryce Talliday at the SEGD OFF GRID 17 event at Prefab in Wellington New Zealand

At Prefab, a fantastic coffee house and event space by Acme&Co, we learned about the coffee culture of New Zealand and heard the answer to one of the most pressing questions of our times: Is Starbucks coffee over-roasted or not?

The answer: when you roast coffee beans, they first expand and create caramel flavors. Then they start to dehydrate, shrink and form carbons. The art of coffee roasting was explained by our host, Prefab Café and Acme&Co owner, Jeff Kennedy. However, that does not even vaguely do his coffee justice, nor does it in any way shine a light on this guy who is a real design perfectionist and has created an amazing space for people to talk, dance, celebrate, read poetry—or plot the downfall of something big, if that is what appeals to them!

Morag Meyersclough speaks at OFF GRID 17 in Wellington

"I Really enjoyed the format of the Off Grid conference. Hiking off to different locations throughout the City not only helped to get a sense of the place, but was an excellent way to experience the different types of design happening in Wellington," said John Lutz, "and it was great to finally make it down under and meet these designers that have been doing such amazing work! Wellington was a gem."

"The actual event was an adrenaline-fuelled blur for me," said Jo Bailey, SEGD Wellington Co-Chair, "I caught Morag and Uwe’s talks, both of which were awe-inspiring. People said amazing things, and got stuck into the whole vibe. Nick made it all look effortless, which it wasn’t!." If you have ever organized an event, you know what Jo means, but along with that comes a tremendous sense of achievement and satisfaction when you see everyone enjoying themselves in your city.

There was a lot of time to interact at SEGD OFF GRID 17

Words can never do an experience like this justice. However, you will get another chance to participate in an OFF GRID experience.

Where is SEGD going OFF GRID next?

Iceland, Argentina, South Africa Australia, Lebanon, Alaska, Katmandu? You’ll have to wait for the announcement, but it will definitely be as far from the last event as we can get without the help of Elon Musk—for now at least!

Nick Kapica, SEGD Chapter Chair, Wellington, New Zealand

Experiential Graphic Design was the umbrella term chosen for SEGD in 2013 to help capture the ever-expanding ways the profession uses communication to connect people to place. Our association covers many different practice areas from Wayfinding to Placemaking, Branded Environments, Exhibition Design, Public Installations, Design Research and Planning. Additionally, digital technologies for interfaces and the use of dynamic digital content are rapidly becoming common ways to connect people to place.

In June 2016, during the SEGD Annual Conference Chapter Chair meeting, I made a proposal that each of the chapters organize a workshop with the intention of investigating what Experiential Graphic Design means in their community. We may very well discover some buried truths about how we design experiences, from the very professionals working to connect people to place. It would certainly be interesting for our community to ponder as the field evolves!

In this same spirit of discovery, SEGD invites the many diverse practitioners of the Experiential Graphic Design field to come together in Wellington, New Zealand for the Off Grid 17 conference.

Off Grid 17 is the first attempt to examine what Experiential Graphic Design means to the design community. At the conference we will investigate, challenge, explore and define the meaning of Experiential Graphic Design and imagine the future of our field in contexts like city infrastructure, educational curriculum and design practice. We will seek to answer questions like: Where does Experiential Graphic Design fit into the ever-expanding discipline of design? What do Experience Design, Service Design, Wayfinding, Brand Identity and Exhibition Design contribute to Experiential Graphic Design? And, How does Experiential Graphic Design actually connect people to place?

Off Grid 17 is going to be a first-of-its-kind design adventure. Register before it is too late.

We hope to see you there!

Nick Kapica


Hello, Weekend!
To kick off your stay in Seattle like a local, you'll need three things: Coffee, Booze, and Good Vibes (maybe some flannel if you're your feeling fancy).

Come as you are (Nirvana pun intended) and hang out with your new found friends and old. No Seattle freeze here, folks. Keep it moving!

Light appetizers served and hosted bar until 8:00P

Palace Ballroom
2100 5th Ave., 
Seattle, WA 98121

RSVP https://segdconf_chapterbash.eventbrite.com

THANK YOU to our event sponsors CREO Industrial Arts and Image Mill!


Rekindle talk: Design for Reuse

Public talk, all welcome. Drinks from 5.30, talk starts at 6pm.

The Pit, Te Ara Hihiko (Block 12)
College of Creative Arts
Massey University
Wellington 6021

Block 12 can be accessed via Entrance C (Wallace Street) or Entrance E (Tasman Street). You can park in non-reserved Massey spaces either side after 5.30.

Wellington Campus Map

We welcome Juliet Arnott of Rekindle to the College of Creative Arts to launch Resource: Rise Again, and talk to us about design for reuse.

Rekindle is a social enterprise that enables diversion of reusable resources from waste via creativity and craftsmanship. Seeing waste as resources full of latent creative opportunity fuels our work. They have initially focused on diverting timber from waste within residential demolition in Christchurch, turning this into furniture, interiors, sculpture and jewellery.

Rekindle are now working in Christchurch and Auckland to expand their model beyond timber into other materials. We see design as the tool that unlocks the qualities of resources undervalued when seen as waste. They aim to grow our capacity to support communities to utilise their waste fully and in doing so, maximize the benefits of the purposeful work involved. As a social enterprise the majority of profits are dedicated to furthering development of this work.

Resource: Rise Again is a project that enables designer/makers across New Zealand to address resources currently going to landfill. This project involves 5 paid positions for designer/makers to undertake intensive periods of problem-solving with waste, resulting in development of high-quality reuse outcomes. The design brief requires commitment to social and environmental impact.

This lecture is brought to you courtesy of SEGD (Society of Experiential Graphic Design) Wellington Chapter, and is sponsored by Peter Yealands Wine.

View poster
View press release

Rekindle poster

SEGD screening poster

Come and join us for an informal evening of choice talk screenings from the 2015 SEGD Chicago conference. Members and non-members welcome. BYO drink if you fancy cracking a beer. 

Date: Thursday 13 August
Time: 6pm-7.30pm
Location: Massey University College of Creative Arts Block 1 Te Whare Pukaka

We'll be showing the following videos from the conference: 

Design for Social Change
George Aye
Greater Good Studio

Cities are facing unprecedented social challenges, and design thinking is playing a crucial role in providing innovative solutions. George Aye and Sara Cantor Aye, co-founders of Greater Good Studio, are leading the way with their innovative practice that uses the power of design to create tools for positive social change. Come and get inspired!

Taming Great Expectations
David Zach

What will the future be like? Strap yourself in for futurist David Zach’s take on the crystal ball. Is it all a guessing game, or can we make sense of how trends, new ideas, and content are shaping how we shape place? Join us for this look-ahead to an evolving design practice model and our future as a global community of thinkers, doers, and makers!

Questions? Tweet @segd_wlg or email [email protected]

Off Grid: An Experiential Journey. New Zealand, 2017

Off Grid: An Experiential Journey is a unique design driven way to experience New Zealand.

Off Grid explores the intersection of communication design and the built environment. Embracing a wide range of design fields, interrogating projects that create a sense of place, that help people find their way, communicate important information, and fuel dialogue between all users, the relationship between people and the spaces they all inhabit.

Off Grid will be a different type of conference that starts at local events in Auckland, Christchurch, Brisbane, and Sydney before participants undertake individual journeys to Wellington, the hub for Off Grid.

Off Grid is an ‘out of the lecture theatre’ experience that offers content you want in appropriate locations delivered in engaging ways. Every evening an Off Grid Party brings everyone together in an unexpected location to meet, discuss and learn from each other.

Off Grid lives through participation, your individual journeys and experiences inform topics that will be discussed when you convene in Wellington. Through an unconference format, opportunities are created for peer-to-peer learning, collaboration and creativity. There is no agenda until you create it!

Off Grid: An Experiential Journey. An international event from the Society for Experiential Graphic Design (SEGD) — the multidisciplinary community creating experiences that connect people to place.

Off Grid will bring influencers engaged in experiential design to stimulate and provoke discussion and respond to the emerging agenda.

Add your name and email address to our mailing-list to keep up to date with developments: http://eepurl.com/bYjSC5

Updates available on:

The Wellington chapter is teaming up with Design Pro Meetup. Introducing the SEGD to the community and exploring the potential for a regular experiential graphic design meetup. Join in, meet good people, have good conversation, share cunning ideas, processes and awesome design recommendations. Main points of the event are:

  • Nick Kapica chats about the Society for Environmental Graphic Design (SEGD) 
  • Dave Keyes shows some internet banking design bits 
  • Jordan MacLachlan previews a new photo app called Luna 
  • Some not-too-bad designery prizes to be won. 
  • Good food and inspired company. 
  • Regroup at a nearby bar afterwards. 

FYI ... we've been going for six years now. Wow. Until I just used my fingers to count it out, I thought it was five years?! Time flies when you're talking design and drinking beer. For more see: www.meetup.com/designpro

introducing … is the first in an ongoing series that features designers in New Zealand working in Experiential Graphic Design, each designer will suggest the next in the series. We begin the series with Catherine Griffiths.

Catherine (b.1966) is an independent designer and typographer who currently lives and works in Auckland and occasionally Paris. Her work is a versatile mix of visual communication design, self-published artist books, typography installations in public and private spaces, and writing memoir-style, on design. In 2002, Catherine won New Zealand’s top graphic design award for the Wellington Writers Walk concrete text sculptures. In 2009, she curated and co-organised New Zealand’s first-ever typography symposium, TypeSHED11. Catherine has been twice shortlisted on teams for Creative Director role at the Venice Architecture Biennale (New Zealand, for 2014, and Australia, for 2016). A large mirror-faced, brass-backed ‘O’ suspended in space is planned for Auckland city, another iteration in her ongoing vowel series.

Fifth Movement, Auckland, New Zealand, 2012 / photograph: Simon Devitt

One of 15 concrete text sculptures Wellington Writers Walk, New Zealand, 2002 — 2004

AEIOU, a typo/sound installation

To find out more about Catherine and her work visit her website: www.catherinegriffiths.co.nz

Sign painters

Come join us at the Wellington campus of Massey University, in the Creative Arts building Te Ara Hihiko. This unique screening in New Zealand, made possible through the SEGD and Massey University, is a fundraiser for a 2015 design expedition to Chicago for a group of Massey students.

Sign Painters celebrates the hand-painted sign industry, an American tradition. This documentary explores a fascinating insight into a a highly specialised underground trade, emphasising an appreciation for a balance between art and commerce. Directed by Faythe Levine & Sam Macon, the film stylistically explores this unacknowledged art form through anecdotal accounts from artists across the country including Ira Coyne, Bob Dewhurst, Keith Knecht, Norma Jeane Maloney and Stephen Powers.

Only 100 tickets are available for purchase, and they are available here:


We will see you there!

Proceed and be Bold! Poster Image

The Printing Museum has secured the rights to screen an acclaimed documentary about Amos Paul Kennedy, a letterpress poster printer from Chicago. Funds raised from the evening will help  preserve the Museum’s outstanding collection of printing equipment.  Proceed and Be Bold! joins Amos for a titillating retelling of his story, while examining the pretensions and provisions of the art world. The work of this self-proclaimed “Humble Negro Printer” raises emotionally-charged questions and reveals remarkable depth beneath the bold print. By learning the rules and then choosing to break them, Amos redefines what life (and letterpress printing) can be: exhilarating and subversive.  Wednesday 24th September 2014, 6pm, The Pit (12B09)Massey College of Creative Arts Building. Premium tickets: $30 (includes your own copy of the DVD), Standard tickets: $20, Massey students: $10. All Ticket Prices include a pre-theatre drink and snack. To reserve tickets: Please email [email protected]

I recently attended the SEGD conference in Atlanta which provided an excellent opportunity to meet and chat with the other chapter chairs. During the three intense days we exchanged anecdotes and observations about signs, wayfinding, wayshowing, typography and  experience design. We heard from leaders in the field, took part in site visits and workshops exploring this rapidly developing field of design. For my part within the Academic Summit I facilitated a workshop and discussion titled Collaborations and Cross-disciplinary Work … more on this in another post.





You can find a review of the conference here: https://segd.org/convergence-2014-segd-conference

Andreas Uebele told attendees, ‘I don’t believe in ideas. I only believe in process’
—Read our interview with Uebele—

Academic and design thinker/writer Per Mollerup told attendees that ‘The best environment is its own wayfinding’
—Read our interview with Mollerup—

Clifford Selbert, FSEGD, has designed some of the most iconic landmarks in the world—including the LAX Gateway—but in Abu Dhabi, his firm’s humble street sign is changing the world. He and colleague Will Ayers are directing a project that includes naming and signing more than 12,000 streets in Abu Dhabi city. The program will be expanded emirate-wide.
—Read the story here

And to end this post here is a collection of EGD related images from Atlanta that I took during a brief exploration of the city.


Images from Best of the Best, Designers Speak

Best of the Best Designers Speak, this Wednesday 14th May at City Gallery, Adam Auditorium, 101 Wakefield Street, Wellington.

The Best Design Awards are a major feature of the local design calendar and a selection of Graphic & Spatial winners are touring the country to offer first-hand insights into their projects: SPECIAL GROUP + ALL GOOD ORGANICS, INHOUSE DESIGN + SIMON DEVITT PHOTOGRAPHER, ALT GROUP and JASMAX + AUT. Predrinks start at 6:00pm., Presentations at 6:30pm. more info: http://dinz.org.nz/calendar/best-of-the-best-designers-speak

Bill Toomath, award winning New Zealand architect and head of the Wellington School of Design throughout the 1980s, passed away on 20th March 2014, aged 89. As a way to accurately refer back to Bill Toomath's architectural life and as a fundraising event to support The Mary Potter Hospice, the Toomath family invites you to a re-screening of Antonella and the Architect on Thursday 3rd April, 4pm at the Paramount Theatre, Courtenay Place. Entry donations will go to Mary Potter Hospice.

The 17th century portrait, St Jerome in his Study by Antonello da Messina, has intrigued Wellington architect Bill Toomath all his life, and in 2002 he designed and built a study for his house based on the painting. Toomath discusses this project, his architectural training and practice, and some of his clients. Time-lapse camera footage captures building progress, and the completed studio with replica desk emerges as a portrait of Toomath himself, and a tribute to architecture and ideas. 

Produced by Tony Hiles, the documentary is 1 hr 17 min in duration.


If you have not already done so there is still time to enter the 2014 SEGD Awards as the deadline has been extended to 21 February. This is your opportunity to be recognised amongst the best experiential graphic design in the world. Read more: http://segd.org/segd-global-design-awards

Of Old India Event

SEGD Society for Environmental Graphic Design and Massey present Hanif Kureshi (29) an art director/graphic designer who studied Fine Arts at M.S. University of Baroda.

Kureshi is fascinated with typography and started handpaintedtype.com, a project to preserve and digitize India’s myriad of street painters’ styles.

His work (the video on painters) has been exhibited internationally. Kureshi has been a speaker at global design events such as TypoBerlin 2012 and Atypl in Iceland 2011.

He has won international and national awards for his various projects. Apart from advertising and typography, Kureshi also practices street art and his creations can be seen around Delhi.