Still are Shape’s parent company and share our dreams for the future of infrastructure technology. Our goal of creating clean, resilient, smart, and connected technology are principles they bring to the wide range of businesses and cultural projects which they have a hand in. Still pursues projects that amplify the fundamentals of human nature, creating the extraordinary from the everyday.
Shape is a part of the Still 100 project, an effort on their part to acquire start or support one hundred New Zealand businesses over the next decade. It is an effort that seeks brave leadership, small teams, and risky projects. It seeks to make change over long stretches of time with ideas that endure. The partnership between Still and Shape exemplifies this. Together we will change how people use the spaces around them through innovative design. While what designs are contemporary may change and grow, our vision does not.
Still is an organisation made up of niche companies, collaborations and cultural projects nurtured in a singular ecosystem. Their projects, investments and activities are expressions of their primary areas of interest: people, nature, arts, and culture. These include Kings Plant Barn, Hulbert House, Consult Recruitment and Drive Electric NZ to name a few. By collaborating with each other, the groups within the Still ecosystem can deliver more than they could individually. Still already supports over fifty, well on its way to the goal of Still 100. These companies will continue to be supported by Still long into the future.
Still gives shape to businesses, investments, collaborations, cultural projects, lobbying and philanthropic endeavours. Still’s New Zealand whānau is made up of innumerable unique people. Each has their own aesthetic sense, their own experiences to draw from. In the same way that the varied businesses make Still stronger, so do those individual’s differences. Step back, and the individual faces that make up Still coalesce into a single image, a single face. Openness and inclusivity are what gives Still its strength.
Still was founded by Hideaki Fukutake, and is also Director of Benesse Holdings, Inc., Berlitz International and efu Investment Ltd. Benesse has been well known as the leading company of education in Japan, and now covers a wide range of business fields such as domestic and international education, senior nursing care and childcare. Hideaki is also Vice-President of the Fukutake Foundation which operates an Art Islands, Benesse Art Site Naoshima and is an important contributor to the world-renowned Setouchi Triennale. This varied yet in-depth experience across both business and cultural endeavours is the source of Still’s lofty aspirations. But now, those aspirations are not only Hideaki’s as the whole of Still reaches towards them.
While Still’s dreams are lofty, it is patient in how it aims to achieve them. The technology industries are brilliantly streamlining our experience of the world, but in the process, they are accelerating us into social, cultural, and ecological debt. Still exists to supply texture and friction, taste and smell, colour, and noise. Still are not resistant to technologization. Still wants to make the most of the technology at its disposal, rather than rush past its full utilisation. It is a counterbalance that looks to expand how we as a people experience the technology around us.
Still focus their activities on the essential elements of their customer’s humanity. The customer’s reaction to their work is one of Still’s greatest treasures, and the catalyst for the continual refinement of that work. They do not shout and shove our work down the throat of the world. Instead, they allow it to be discovered and interpreted by people in their own terms. In this way, Still’s customers and partners may take ownership of the works and are afforded the freedom to layer it with their own interpretation. Still’s work is always in collaboration with its clients.
The guiding principles of Still have informed how Shape has grown. It has internalised these lessons and will uses them as a guide as it grows. Shape will lead New Zealand into the future of infrastructure. It will do so at a measured pace that ensure that everything it delivers is clean, connected, resilient, and collaborative.
You can find out more about Still, the work they are undertaking and how you can become a part of it at still.org.nz