From 1,000 entries, this is the winner of Gareth Morgan's new flag design competition

An Auckland design studio has won Gareth Morgan's $20,000 flag competition, set up because the economist and philanthropist wanted to see more flag designs that honoured the spirit of the Treaty of Waitangi.

Gareth Morgan describes why this flag was the winner of his design competition. Source: Breakfast

Mr Morgan felt the Government competition wasn't delivering on this respect, saying the design brief wasn't clear.

Studio Alexander, headed by Grant Alexander, designed a flag titled "Wā kāinga / Home" which was picked by a judging panel of designers from just under 1,000 entries.  

The winning design brings the different parts of New Zealand society together, similar to the South African flag, and features three coloured triangles and a white space. 

A red triangle symbolises Maori who invited their Treaty partners to share the land, a blue triangle represents the heritage of British settlers, and a black triangle symbolises our modern multicultural society. 

These three influences are brought together by the white space, which is also reminiscent of the Maihi - the diagonal bargeboards - on the front of a Maori meeting house. 

Studio Alexander chief Grant Alexander says they entered the competition because "our imagination was captured by the Morgan Foundation's professional approach, a good brief, design professionals judging and an appropriate financial reward".

Mr Morgan is adamant that the New Zealand flag should change and claims the present one is past its use by date.

"It is a defaced British naval ensign, an artifact of a colonial era and doesn't reflect modern Aotearoa New Zealand. It is an insult to Maoridom, and all other immigrants for that matter," he says. 

Mr Morgan hopes the Flag Consideration Panel will look closely at the results of his competition. 

The panel is currently narrowing down thousands of entries to a long-list, before four are chosen to go before the public in a referendum.

The winner of that vote will then go up against the current flag in a second referendum. 

Winner of Gareth Morgan's flag competition, designed by Studio Alexander
Winner of Gareth Morgan's flag competition, designed by Studio Alexander Source: Supplied