|Dates||April / May|
AfrikaBurn is an official Burning Man regional event, held annually in the Tankwa Karoo in South Africa since 2007. It is centred on the construction of temporary artworks in a semi-desert environment, some of which are burnt towards the end of the event. Many attendees wear elaborate costumes and create decorated "mutant vehicles".
Africa Burns Creative Projects (AfrikaBurn) was created in 2007 as a Not-For-Profit Company, with the intention that it would serve as a vehicle for the creation and co-ordination of an independent South African Burning Man regional event. AfrikaBurn was originally conceived by Paul Jorgensen. The company's founding Members were Richard Bowsher, Paul Jorgensen, Monique Schiess, Mike 't Sas-Rolfes, Liane Visser and Robert Weinek. The company's initial Directors were Paul Jorgenson, Monique Schiess, Michael 't Sas-Rolfes, Liane Visser & Robert Weinek.
The event has been running since 2007, with all events to date held on a private farm called Stonehenge, which is adjacent to the Tankwa Karoo National Park. The farm is very isolated, as it is situated half-way along the R355, a 250 kilometres (160 mi) long untarred road between Calvinia and Ceres in the Northern Cape Province of South Africa.
The event was originally called AfrikaBurns, however owing to concerns about the name having possible negative connotations there was a public call for proposals on 15 May 2008. On 16 July 2008 the new name, AfrikaBurn, was officially announced via email. The new name preserves the identity of the event, but rules out possible negative interpretations by changing the name from something that happens ('burns') to Africa, to something that happens (a 'burn') in Africa.
In 2010 the dates of the annual event were moved to earlier in the year, as autumn weather is better suited to the event, and it is currently possible for a public holiday (or in some years two public holidays) to be included within the week during which the event runs. It also means that it is not so close to Burning Man, to allow for more international participants.
The theme for any AfrikaBurn is intended as a point of possible connection, or inspiration. The theme is not enforced, and art or performance is not necessarily in line with the theme.
|2007||22–25 November||Stonehenge farm||Tribe||~1,000|
|2008||16–19 October||Stonehenge farm||Power||~1,200|
|2009||9–13 September||Stonehenge farm||Time||~1,600|
|2010||22–27 April||Stonehenge farm||Dream||~2,200|
|2011||27 April - 2 May||Stonehenge farm||Stof: the Primal Mud||~4,000|
|2012||25–30 April||Stonehenge farm||Mirage||~5,700|
|2013||1–6 May||Stonehenge farm||Archetypes||~7,000|
|2014||28 April - 4 May||Stonehenge farm||The Trickster||~9,000|
|2015||27 April - 3 May||Stonehenge farm||The Gift||~9,800|
|2016||25 April - 1 May||Stonehenge farm||X||~11,700|
The current directors of the organisation are Paul Grose, Robert Weinek, Sam Bendzulla, Adetola Okunlola and Julia Savage.
By analogy to the Man at Burning Man, the main sculpture at the event is called the San Clan. It is designed to look like a San rock art glyph of a group of people. The intention is to convey the idea of unity and community at the event. Like some sculptures at the event, it is burnt. The burn used to take place on the Saturday night, but is now scheduled for Friday nights in order to accommodate weather delays and provide participants from far afield with more time to return home from the event.
As a regional Burning Man event, AfrikaBurn adheres to the ten principles of Burning Man and added another in 2014. Among these guiding principles are the Leave No Trace philosophy, self-expression, self-reliance, and communal effort. The 11th principle, 'Each One Teach One', was added to encourage the sharing of knowledge throughout the community, in order to ensure the uptake of culture matches the growth in numbers.
Pets are not allowed at the event. This is due to concerns for the safety of both the animals (loud noises and an inhospitable environment), and the participants. In addition, fireworks, flares and fire lanterns are not permitted.
Theme camps are one of the key components of vibrant regional Burning Man events. Theme camps are established by participants to enhance the experience for all participants.
Major theme camps from the last few years include "Heartspace", "The Desert Rose", "Partycipation", "Amadeadly Disco", "The Vuvu Lounge", "Camp M*A*S*H*E*D", "Cosmic Groove Lounge", "Silent Cinema", "Domain", "Good Clean Fun", "LEDHEDz", "Land Of Soft Things", "Sunset Oasis", "Metal Heads", "Be Dazzled", "Wonderleka Woeskus Desert Daisies" and "Burning Mail". Each year, the number of Theme Camps grows in line with the increase in numbers.
"MOOP", or Matter Out Of Place, is the term for litter. Reducing and removing MOOP is part of the Leave No Trace philosophy.
- "Regional Network". AfrikaBurn. Retrieved 2013-06-05.
- "What is AfrikaBurn". AfrikaBurn. Retrieved 2015-06-04.
- "10 Principles of Burning Man". Burning Man. Retrieved 2013-06-05.
- "Guiding Principles". AfrikaBurn. Retrieved 2013-06-05.
- "Leave No Trace". AfrikaBurn. Retrieved 2013-06-05.
- "Community Participation". AfrikaBurn. Retrieved 2013-06-05.
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