The Baardskeerder - AfrikaBurn's Newsletter - View web version

 (Reclaiming the streets of Obs at Streetopia 2016, as shot by Jojo Gaucha)  

Here it comes: the end of the year. That whooshing sound? Yup: it's coming at us faster than any of us would expect. The next thing you know, you'll be packing your car/trailer/campervan with all manner of desert survival gear in order to haul out into The Thing In The Dust We All Do Together. But wait - before 2019 happens while we're busy making other plans, there's still time for one more newsletter - and this comes loaded with a hefty dollop of news about Streetopia, which is a great way to see faces old and new and bring our community's spirit alive.
In this newsletter:


(Behold the gorgeous: this is the ticket artwork for our 2019 event, created by volunteer designer Camille Tindogan   

You’ve got yours? Well played. Wait, what - you don't? Well, take it from us (who know about these things): even we don't know when tickets for our 2019 event will sell out. Right now, over half of the tickets available have sold - but they're moving smoothly along, so heed this: make the most of the opportunity now, because if it comes to Feb and they're all gone, you (and quite possibly your significant other, or your campmates) will be left scrambling to get yours on our resales platforms. But those aren't guaranteed. 

If you're faced with a cash crunch, don't forget that we also do have lower-priced tickets in the form of
Anathi and Subsidised Tickets, both of which are much cheaper than our General Sale tickets. To get those, all you need do is apply, using the relevant form on our Tickets page. And that would be where?

That would be right here.

To buy tickets isn't rocket surgery: all you need to do is log into our site, and then click 'Buy Tickets'. Shazam.



Imagine, if you will, being able to take over a suburb for a day, and fill it with the costume, creativity, colour and good vibes of Tankwa Town. A place where kids - of every age - can come out to play, frolic and be free. A space where a human, a mustache and a charango can roam. Alleys, streets and pavements filled with art, craft, chatter and mutant vehicles. We get one shot at it a year, it's called Streetopia - and it all happens for the 4th time this very Saturday, Dec 1st, in Cape Town. Read on, reader - and do take us up on the invitation: there's a blank canvas that awaits, and this one's smack bang in the throbbing multicultural metropolis of Observatory, Cape Town. 

And - because Streetopia is our way of giving back to the hood that's acted as something of a crucible for this madcap experiment called AfrikaBurn over the years - it's completely free.

Here's the lowdown about all aspects of this, our fourth expedition into bringing the streets alive:
                                                                                                   (Trash Cabaret at Streetopia 2016, on the Village Green stage, as shot by Jonx Pillemer)


You'd think it was a tough call, to get musicians to step up and volunteer their time and art, but it turns out, the spirit of the dust is alive and well at Streetopia, and it shows in the wide spread of stages and genres that will fill spaces on the day. Check it out: there are 6 stages playing an enormous range of music that includes highlights like Colorfields, Shift Mawelele, Ward 10, Dax Butler and, oh, about 22 other acts. And then there's a massive lineup (which includes the Rudimentals) over at Trenchtown too. But wait... there's so much more...


Beyond the stages, a wide swathe of buskers and street performers have also stepped up to fill the streets with music and skills - and these include drumming troupes, ActionArte acrobats, street magicians, jugglers, electric marimba, belly dancers. And, as if that weren't already enough ingredients to pique your interest, there's also a rather large number (90 or so) of market traders consisting of the citizens of Tankwa Town, and also many Obs residents - all of whom are offering handmade and homemade art, craft, clothing and food. Phew. Enough already? Hayibo, suk' khawuleza: there's more. 


Because our team close a full kilometre of Lower Main Road off, we get to invite the creators of Mutant Vehicles along too, and there'll be a great showing on the day of the kind of weird and wonderfully mutated vehicles you'd only ever see in the Tankwa - including two of your all-time favourites, Buggalux and Bakgatti, and some new ones you might not have seen yet, like The Crawler, which will also serve as a sound stage down the lower end of Lower Main. Adding to the mix, classic and vintage autos and bikes will also be on display, making for an area that will keep lovers of petrol and gearboxes very happy. And then there's the art...

                                                           ('Aweh' by Marti Lund & AwehMigo, one of 3 Legacy Project artworks this year's Streetopia has generated for Obs)

Well, it wouldn't be an AfrikaBurn community affair without loads of art, now would it? Hell, no - so it's with the whizz of posidrives and the bang of hammers that we'll see a lot of artwork erected on the day. Among them are a brand-new piece created by artist Jon Wreal named 'Afrika Digitata', a very blue reclining lady named 'Sleepyhead II', and 'The Shrine Of Lost Moments' will be there too - as will 'Superdry' the life-size orca, and the fabulous Reggae Pavilion. And... well, there's more. Lots more. Including a very long and very glittery Silver Cloud, as seen at last year's event.

Beyond those, most of which will be located on the Village Green, this year's event has also seen the rollout of 3 Legacy Projects - and those will go on to remain long after this year's Streetopia. Among them are a mural ('Aweh' - above) by artists Marti Lund and AwehMigo, a series of illustrations on pillars along Lower Main Rd by Clinton Osbourne & The Kif Collective - and lastly, Yandiswa Mazwana and Monique Fagan are brightening up an otherwise dreary passageway along Station Rd with recycled art archways.

                                                                                                (Rangers Mushroom and Bob, in the wild, at Streetopia 2016, shot by Aurelio Teles Topper)


True: Streetopia, much like AfrikaBurn, is driven by the efforts of a small army of volunteers: Rangers. Strike Crew. Setup Crew. Art Assistants. DPW. Artists. Musicians... the list is long - and you right there can join it, if you'd like to step up and help out. Here's a list of the volunteer options available to you - please do step up & sign up: it's always wonderful when the knackered core crew get some fresh helping hands on the day who help to lighten (or lift) the load:

Setup Crew
Strike Crew
Art Assistants
Leave No Trace


...and if none of these menu items suit your palate, you could always email and our team will happily find a role and time that suits you & your skills.
                                                                                                                   (Best Dressed Contest finals at last year's Streetopia, as shot by Sean Furlong)


Our day on the streets is closed with a whoop and a holler - and those are generated by the crowd at the Best Dressed Contest. Does it feature the same mad mix of dress up that you might stumble upon in Tankwa Town? Yup, it does - and this year's Best Dressed will again be presided over by the very irreverant and rather purple Bishop Loon! But wait - hang on in there sweetie, we're nearly done - there's more: 1st prize is... a ticket to AfrikaBurn 2019. And 2nd is a copy of Simon O'Callaghan's amazing photobook 'Burn - Into The Flames of Burning Art'. So there's that. 

So - dust off your best, or bust out your dress, and come & join us on the streets of Obs on the day. And look out for the Fashion Police: because it's they that will be ticketing you, as an invite to step up at 5:30 and join the show.

In case you missed the basics, here they are again:

When: Saturday 1st Dec, 10am - 6pm
Where: Lower Main Rd, Observatory (from Norfolk to St Michael's) and the Village Green
What: you, and a couple thousand other colourful people in costume, volunteering and doing what they do best
Tickets: it's free, gratis & mahala - so bring the kids, dogs and dust off your best dress

More info? Head over to the
Facebook Event page for the latest updates, or check out 

See you on the streets!



That's right: it's The Spirit Train, and that steampunk wolf is baying to get back to the dust. And you can help Lobo get back home where he roams the plains - by checking out their fundraiser, which happens - look at that - this Saturday, also in Obs, Cape Town. As always, the lineup's a fantastic back-to-back list of accomplished knob twiddlers, and all proceeds will go towards rolling the train out for us all to enjoy next year in the Tankwa.

When: Saturday 1st December, 4pm - 12 midnight
Where: Obs Garden Restaurant, 45 Trill Rd Obs, Cape Town
Tickets: 100 randelas -
get 'em here on Quicket


Ever wondered how this strange & wonderful organisation named AfrikaBurn functions? (a hint: it's not all cable ties and duct tape). And have you ever had an interest in getting involved on a deeper level? Opportunities exist all year (because we like having a porous surface area: it keeps new humans and their great ideas flooding in) - but right now, our Member and Director nominations period is upon us. Those are the two bodies - but not the only ones - that vote on and discuss the big ideas and decisions that keep our organisational engine running smoothly, and anyone in our community is able to step up and become part of them.

To find out more about the structure of our organisation, and ways in which you can step up and get involved on an organisational level,
head to this page on our website.
                                                                                                                                                 (thanks to Antonium for these shots of the Booth in the wild)

Our current Lost & Found Booth - you know the one, it's where you were overheard having a biblical moment shouting 'Oh my god - hallelujah!' when your [insert highly valuable item that you lost in the dust here] was returned to you - is going to be upcycled & reused to accommodate our Kid's Registration & Fluffer activities. So - we'd like to build a new Lost & Found Booth, using recycled and donated materials. Because, you know, it makes sense.

Here's what Antonium, one of our new DPW crew bosses (she's the boss of Workshops & Manufacturing, by the way) is looking for: 'timber, steel, log offcuts, doors, windows, beams, battens etc ' Got waste material, or recyclables, that fit these descriptions? Lekker - mail to make Lost & Foundish magic happen for next year.

Well, kinda sorta almost - for this year. at least, it's true. As we race towards the future, don't forget that this is your newsletter, so if you have any content you'd like to see featured, drop that info & image into our Newsletter Submission page, and we'll scoop that up and plonk it into the first of 2019, which will go out on Thursday Jan 17th. Until then, hold fast, look after each other, don't drive drunk, take good care of your planet and always remember to read the label.

Travis Lyle
Head of Communications

Hey! You still there? Wow, OK. In case you can't make it to Streetopia this time round, here's news on how you could experience it, vicariously: Radio Free Tankwa, our community radio station, will be broadcasting all day live from the Village Green. Tune in & turn on at (which streams 24/7/365, by the way. Perhaps tuck in now, and you'll get a taste of the eclectic mix of music, which is served 100% commercial advert free - and always will be). 


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AfrikaBurn • P.O.Box 191, Observatory, Cape Town, 7925 • South Africa •   Unsubscribe here