The Baardskeerder - AfrikaBurn's Newsletter - View web version


  (Clan 2011, built by Nathan Victor Honey, Isa Marques, Cameron Richards, Helio Lobo, Tiaan Visser & Mark Julyan / photo by Jonx Pillemer)  


Oh, February. Nobody seems to love you, and many regard you as the Tuesday of the year: neither here nor there, just a waiting zone and stepping stone on the way to brighter days. That might be the case for some, but for us dust and fire lovers? Hell, it's a hump month: March and April (the Thursday and Friday of our event cycle) lie beyond, meaning Feb is traditionally the real start of the crazy-crazy-go-go season as dreaming and scheming starts to morph into planning and prep. And oh, is there a lot of that going on, so settle in and enjoy the read - there's a whole lotta shakin' going on... 

In this newsletter:



                                                                                                                                                            (Gate & Ticketing, 2009 - photo by Ray Du Toit)


Zoom - hear that? That was the sound of our Subsidised Tickets deadline coming, and going. You know what else went zoom? The closing date for Anathi Ticket & Access Grant combo applications. If you'd been planning on applying for an Anathi Ticket - which are R200 and are designed to make inclusion and accessibility a reality for the many folks in SA who would love to participate in our main event but don't have the budget - don't lose heart: though combined applications for Anathi Tickets & Access Grants closed on Jan 31st, applications for Anathi Tickets remain open until Friday April 17th.

Want info on the tickets that make the circle bigger?
Click this.

And what else should you know about tickets in general? Ah - they're moving swifter than previous years, most likely on account of the fact this is the last year our event will be held at Stonehenge Private Reserve, before we make the move to
Quaggafontein in 2021. Moral? Make sharp, get 'em while you can.

Need info on tickets? As always, head to the Tickets page of our website.



Remember the impressive woven wristbands from last year, created by designer Severin Taranko, which featured artworks and mutant vehicles and the Tankwa landscape? They were pretty sweet, right? Dead right. And how do you top that? Ah - Severin knows, and he's ready to roll with the next ambitious round. The idea? This time round, he wants to create a keepsake that marks the last time we gather at Stonehenge - and it won't be a wristband, but rather a lekker necklace, with a brass pendant.

Sound good? Interested in supporting his project? Damn fine -
head this way to make this project take wings.


                                            (Let That Shit Go: a toilet bank at the end of our 2018 event, the year we introduced the new units. Photo: Zaheer GB)


In case you were like 'Toilets? WTF? Where's the updates about the headline DJ's and the mega-rigs where all the sexy dancefloor people are at?', here's news: AfrikaBurn is not a music festival, no DJ's (headline, international or otherwise)  are ever announced, and if it's sexy dancefloor you're after, we can recommend a wide range of events that would definitely be less dusty, uncomfortable, extreme or distant. But back to the jazz...

Back in 2018, we introduced 140 new toilet units at our event, which replaced the pit toilets of yore, and also the portaloos that were used in some areas. The units were designed by a community member with 22 years' experience in sanitation engineering, and we're happy to say they rock. The reason they rock? They make use of a 100% organic fluid that prevents smells, and stops flies from getting at the contents of the toilet tank. All of which is good, for you, and the planet.

More - we've now happy to announce that we have received analysis from a certified laboratory, and the results are very good indeed: the remediated offtake from our Loos With A View have passed the test, and the compost made from the contents is good to go for use as fertiliser.

Want to know more about our toilets?
Click this, right here, and enjoy the read.

                                                     (SKOP Clan, 2015 by Nathan Victor Honey and the Sutherland Kuns Opleidings Projek / photo: Adriaan Van Zyl)


Not everything at our event should, or does burn - but for those who do plan to burn their artwork (and even for those who don't), our Creative portfolio are hosting a free pyro workshop soon in the yard of our HQ. Building a sculpture, and building a sculpture to burn, are two different things - and if you're intending to build a sculpture that burns, remember that you're basically building a fire that's shaped like a sculpture. With that in mind, this workshop is designed to give you info on materials, accelerants, safety and how to manage a fire perimeter. 

For those with plans to build and burn this year, this workshop is your opportunity to have a one-on-one chat with pyro and fire safety experts, so come along (and bring your project sketches and ignition plans).

When: Saturday 29th February, 10am to 1pm
Where: AfrikaBurn HQ, 8 Junction Rd, Salt River, Cape Town
RSVP: please confirm attendance by emailing
Event page on FB? Right here.



Planning to build an artwork this year? If you are, step up and register that fabulous creations of yours - you don't have to, but if you do, our Artwork Registration form will help you through all the complexities of bringing & building art - and once registered, you'll receive all sorts of useful & important updates and assistance from our Art department. 

There are some deadlines involved, so if you would like to:
- burn your piece, or for it to have a fire component and/or sound element, have a say in the placement of your piece, and have it listed on our printed map of our event, please register by February 29th
- and if you'd like to have your piece listed in our WTF event guide, please register no later than March 29th

If you miss these dates and don't register, you're still able to bring your piece - but you won't be able to get assistance from our team. So - wanna register your piece?
Log into our website, create a Collective, and then register your artwork to the Collective, and our team will get back to you.





There's a surprise awaiting us all in the desert this time round - if you head over to our community services hub, Off-Centre Camp, you'll see a new structure on the corner of 10ish Boulevard and Binnekring Road. It's look something like the render image you see above, and it's our newly-revamped stage. Once known as (the somewhat humdrum) Off-Centre Camp Stage, now known as Chillaz!

Chillaz? Yep - it's a social gathering space, a stage (that's open to you and your performance, workshops or activities) and it will make for something of a navigation beacon too, once lit up at night, on account of some nifty glowing structures that have been prepped over the last couple months here at our HQ. Shout out to Lebo, Jano, Soulitude and Sham for their hard work!

The best part? Chillaz will also feature a free tea & coffee station. Free, as in a gift that's gratis and mahala. Sound good?

To find out more about Chillaz, and what it holds in store for us all,
head to this freshly-published post on our blog.

                                                                                        (Thanks to Streetopia Co-ordinator Sonica Kirsten for this shot of Streetopia Jozi last year)


After an amazing first time on the streets of Melville in October last year, the team behind Streetopia Jozi are looking to expand the organising committee to stage an even more kick-ass event in October later this year. They're calling for artists and burners with event management and production skills that are based in Gauteng and can volunteer time and expertise to make it all happen.

If you're up for the challenge of helping to organise a free community event on the streets, please send a CV and motivation through to (and to see just fabulous last year's event was, take a look right here).

                                                                                                     (Some fresh signage for our Lost & Found Booth, as made at the last Volunteer Day)


On Saturday, our volunteers will be cracking on with creating some signs & an African art installation for Chillaz (which is the new name of our revamped Off-Centre Camp Stage), as well as making flags and moop bags. Oh - and for code freaks, there'll also be a Hackathon which will see geeks mess around with a number of items like RocketChat and Raspberry Pi (and you're welcome to bring tech toys along to tinker with).

Sound like the kinda creative stuff you're up for? Grand, get involved:

When: Saturday Feb 15th, 10am - 4pm
Where: Our HQ, 8 Junction Rd, Salt River, Cape Town
Event page on FB?
Right here.


You'd know that we take a hard line on Plug & Play camps, and service mentality, in our decommodified temporary autonomous zone. You didn't? Well, there you go: it's true - since the spectre of luxury camps that had paid staff (some, even with chefs and cleaning staff) raised up a few years back, we've tightened things right up, to effectively ban any activity of this nature. Why? Because radical self reliance, decommodification, participation - and the gorgeous idea that at our event, for once in the world, wealth has no meaning. The dust don't care about credit cards - it cares about effort, humanity and what you do to make others' lives better.

With all of that in mind, a reminder: the only service enabled at our event is the delivery of materials required to make your camp, or project, come to life. You still need to build, sweat and clean up along with your crew - but suppliers need to be registered, so that our Supplier team can explain our culture, and how our event is very different to others.

If you're expecting deliveries supplies or equipment, please get them to email our team on to ensure they won't have any issues accessing our event to drop off the stuff you need.


Sanctuary provides a safe & supportive space for overwhelmed participants, 24/7, and is manned by qualified and caring crew - and they're open for applications from anyone with experience in harm reduction, medical & mental health and/or psychological counselling. If this sounds like the deeper AfrikaBurn experience you're after that would enable you to explore more of your ability, you're welcome to sign up, right here. Or, if you've never done this before but would like to train up to join our Sanctuary, come along to the training session happening this Saturday at our HQ:

When: Saturday 15th Feb, 1:30 - 5pm
Where: AfrikaBurn HQ, 8 Junction Rd, Salt River, Cape Town
Event page?
Right here.

Need more info? See the Sanctuary page of our website


There are over 100 projects already registered on our website ahead of this year's event (and you can view those here - and also connect with crews that are looking for humans with specific skills) - and as we race towards our date with the dust, so many project Collectives are calling out for collaborators. Tuck in, connect, make magic happen.



Sonus Arbor's taking shape, and promises to be a sonic experience that will immerse and impress - and its creators, the Willow Room Collective, are in search of other art projects planning to use a generator. so they can share. If you're part of a crew that's planning to use a gennie on your build but won't be using it to its full capacity, get in touch with them - they'd love to share: contact 

About Sonus Arbor:

"You find yourself in front of a willow tree. As you pull back the curtain of branches, soft waves of sound begin to ripple through the great tree. You want to play. Sonus Arbor (the sound tree) is an interactive installation combining music and design through motion. The music changes according to your position within the tree, inviting you to interact with the space, making music with your friends."

Find out more about the project on
their Facebook page - and see more on their Instagram channel.



Some folks end up in the desert, without anything fabulous to wear - and when they do, do you know the first place they go calling? It's a little slice of costume heaven, and it's been around 10 years, servicing un-fabulous folks with nifty coats, hats, glasses and more. It's Bedazzled - and they're looking for your old costume wear, and some love.

Got old fancy dress, costume, or accessories that could help a fellow human up their game in the dust? Donate if to a loving home by contacting Timea on

Or - if you're one of the folks that Bedazzled has helped out over the years, and you're wondering how to give back to the camp that's given so much over the past 10 years, you could always give them a donation on their funding page.




Here's word from Josie Mooi, Ranger and all-round fabulous human:

"We're a group of crazy, positive, fun-loving humans who've decided to run a theme camp this year as a farewell to our old event site and a celebration of going to the new. We'd love to share some African culture with everyone - so our gift will be a constant feast surrounded by good music and food & drink. We'll serve umqombothi (traditional beer) and umngqusho (samp and beans) for our fellow participants. And for those who want to know what their future holds, there'll be a sangoma to see what the ancestors have in store for you. With some gumboot dancing and African folk stories told around a fire, there'll be no shortage of entertainment - and we'll also be collaborating with some African storytellers to put on some shows for your delight, and have impromptu language classes. We need all the help we can get - want to join? Just let us know. We're looking forward to seeing you in the dust!"

Interested in helping Josie and her crew bring African culture alive at the burn? Show 'em some love on their funders - if it's a
Paypal you prefer, click here, or is you'd prefer to use Quicket, click here. Wanna collaborate? Get in touch with Josie on



There's a temple of curiosity that's been building for over a year now - and its crew are looking for some help with the costs to get Ilukuluku to site and into place. From Shaun Sebastian, project lead:

"Help us raise Iukuluku off the ground - we can't do this without you! To help us bring you a bright gemoetric experience, we've got to hit our tipping point on funding - and when we reach that point, we'll be able to cover the costs of our materials and transport that will make up our structure. When we reach our dream goal, we can share our amazing experience with you!"

Help Ilukuluku out -
check out their Instagram here, and support their funding drive here.





There's a damn fine crew out there that's looking to raise the almighty vagina up to the status she deserves - massively so, in fact: they're building a rather large Vaginarium of Dreams slide artwork, replete with a clit that will light up when a button is pushed. Fun? And then some - but also serious too: the structure will also house a 'red tent' safe space where womxn can gather to take part in discussions around the feminine divine and sacred ceremonies. Help them make their dreams come true - support their fundraiser event!

When: Saturday Feb 22nd, 6pm - 12am
Where: The newly-reopened Armchair Theatre, Lower Main Rd, Observatory, Cape Town
Tickets: presales are
R85 via Quicket (and are R100 on the door)
Event page? Right here,
fiddle this button.

Other info: in keeping with the crew's infamous house party vibe, the event's a BYOB, with the bar serving mixers and non-alcoholic drinks. Watch the event page for announces of some kick-ass DJ's.



The Holy Mountain crew are hosting their fundraiser in the Cradle of Humankind in Gauteng - and you're invited! Join them as they enjoy a day out in nature, with dancing, swimming and a bonfire.

When: Saturday, Feb 29th, 12pm - 4pm
Where: Cradle Moon Lakeside Game Lodge, Gauteng
Event page, with ticket info?
Right here.



This crew has been furiously working to get their project materials prepped ahead of the trek to the desert - but to transport it all and make sure their crew are sorted, they're hosting their final fundraiser in Cape Town soon. Join them as they stage 'Triptych No. 3', at which you'll be able to view 3 of the wildly bright & geometric panels (under blacklight) that will make up a portion of their wild structure - and listen to the tunes of three DJ's (Sledge, Viking and Apacahe) that would be familiar to you in Tankwa Town. Bonus: on the night, Radio Free Tankwa will be staging a live broadcast from the event.

When: Thursday February 20th, 10pm - 4am
Where: Modular, 34 Riebeeck Street, Cape Town
Event page on FB?
Right here.

                                                                                                                           (DPW family gathering to watch sunset, 2018 / photo: Jonx Pillemer)


They're dusty, they're brave, they're full of sass - and chances are very good you've had the benefit of their hard work in your time. If you've ever:

- needed rebar pulled with a tree popper
- needed to borrow a magnet sweep
- had to request a crane truck to erect anything
- enjoyed the benefit of signs and streetlights on site
- or sat on a clean and serviced toilet at our event

then you've been on the receiving end of the generosity and skills that our Department of Public Works provides every year to our temporary city of experimentation and creativity. Wondering how you could repay them? Here's how - go along and support their fundraiser! 

It all happens a stone's throw from our HQ, at one of the oldest-running nightclubs in Cape Town - and all funds raised will go towards treating our hardworking family to some items that will make life better for them in the desert, like tents, toiletries, hoodies, headtorches and yummy treats.

When: Saturday, match 7th, 6:30pm - 1am
Where: Gandalf's, 299 Lower main Road, Observatory
Event page on FB?
Here you go.



Sure, you could buy plastic costume gear. And yes, you absolutely can spend top dollar on a bejazzled hat, that will inevitably break off bits that our Leave No Trace crew will definitely have to pick up long after you've sashayed around like yours was the world's first festival accessory ever. But then, inevitably, that expensive but oh-so-gorgeous for all of 5 hours outfit will probably end up in a landfill. Not lekker, and probably not what you meant to happen. Nope: you're an individual - and you know what individuals do? They make their own, truly unique, costumes, from scratch. 

Wanna know how? Here's how - join the experimental costume-making workshop being hosted at our HQ by designers and makers Sikelela Kwatsha (that's him up above, in the dust, looking fabulous) and Zaid Philander. The 3-part workshop will take you through every step required to take your idea from a drawing through to an actual, wearable, non-landfill piece of fabulosity. And in the process, you'll learn some valuable skills that will serve you for years to come.

Yes? Damn fine, here's the detail:

When: First session is this Saturday, Feb 15th (session 2: 21 March, session 3: 18 April)
Where: Our HQ, 8 Junction Rd, Salt River, Cape Town
Cost: R600 for the 3 sessions

To sign up, book your spot and get more info,
head to the Quicket page.


Was your project or activity included in this week's newsletter? No? Ah - you see, there's a cure for that malaise, and it's easily obtained. All you need to do is head to the Newsletter page of our website, and drop your news, callout, fundraiser, event or other important tidbit into our submission form. On submission, our hardworking newsletter team will knock your words and pictures into shape, and all manner of joy and happiness will inevitably unfold.

Onward to the dust!


Who made this?

Publisher, writer, editor: Travis Lyle
Proofreading & general eyes: Tim Doyle
Contributions from a cast of glamorous and canny dust lovers.


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