(Est. 1996) “Air Tahiti Nui is a French airline with its head office in Papeete, Tahiti, French Polynesia, France. It operates long-haul flights from its home base at Faa’a International Airport. Air Tahiti Nui was founded to connect the world to one of the world’s great treasures, the islands of Tahiti. Our fleet of five Airbus A340-300s provides service to Tahiti from Paris, Los Angeles, Auckland and Tokyo. With partnership and codeshare agreements, we’ve extended that route network to include 39 major cities around the world, including Sydney and New York.”
Air Tahiti Nui’s previous identity was composed of a dominant and italicised sans-serif wordmark, complemented by a Tiare flower symbol stylised with thin, gestural lines. The overall message was out of balance, the western-world wordmark drawing all the attention while the true symbol of the region, the Tiare, one of romantic mythology and emblematic of the connection between people and land, was given a seat at the back. The opportunity was to restore harmony and bring culture back into the centre of the experience.
We found that to do this, we needed to bring the Tiare to the fore, staying as true as possible to its true form – a white flower with seven petals, full in its curves, beautiful in its imperfections and organic in its rendering. The focus was to have it experienced as naturally as a mark in the skies, as you would as a flower in the islands of Tahiti – unique and proud. To do this we worked with the Tahitian artist, Alexander Lee, to ensure that the mark was in keeping with the Tahitian people and their traditions. All designs were also created in collaboration with a wide range of stakeholders to ensure that cultural authenticity was at the focus of all design.
Images (opinion after)
The old logo looked cheap with the italic font, scribbly flower drawing, and swooshy underline. It felt like an old, low-fare airline. The new logo has a much more premium feel with an elegant custom wordmark and a new, blossomy rendition of the tiare flower… that I wish were more interestingly executed. I like the fact that it was drawn by a local artist and that it captures the uneven, asymmetric, wobbly nature of the flower but when translated into clean vectors, it feels unfinished somehow. Maybe they could have gone with a much more textural feel to fully convey that the icon was drawn by hand. Also, maybe it’s just me, but I keep seeing a human head at the center of the flower and it’s kind of creeping me out, man. The icon may also be exaggeratedly big in contrast to the wordmark. What I want to see more of are the patterns in the video (from the 1:00 mark to the 1:20 mark); those look nice. Overall, it’s an improvement for sure but there is something off about the flower.