Tuesday, May 25, 2010

The Lure Of Tankwa Town

When I went on leave I posted a comment on Facebook about how excited I was to be going to Tankwa. One of my friends responded and asked me to elaborate because on the satellite image there appears to be absolutely nothing there!
While this is true for most of the year (Tankwa is a nature reserve in the middle of the desert in the Karoo), once a year a small section of the area is transformed into a temporary tent city where a growing group of creative people gather to express themselves in whatever manner tickles their fancy.
AfrikaBurn is modelled on the American Burning Man event. Esentially it is a platform for self-expression. Anybody is welcome to attend and free to present any creative work, be it sculpture, performance art, music, dance, yoga, sport, painting, craft, lightshow or other interactive activity. At the heart of the event is a culture of gifting and every participant is encouraged to arrive with something to share with the group. The event offers a level playing field due to its strictly non-commercial nature. Branding, marketing and advertising are not allowed. The focus is not on commercial value, rather on the Arts as a gift to be shared with humanity.
Because of the harsh environmental conditions, it is also an exercise in “radical self-reliance”. You bring everything that you need to survive for the duration of the event, including water, and you take it all away with you again when you leave, including your garbage. The organisers have a strict “Leave No Trace” policy to which you agree when you buy your ticket. Participants are also encouraged to volunteer and many do. Volunteer duties range from meet and greet at the gate, to garbage and toilet clean-up.
The event culminates in a mass burning on the final night where most of the art installations and sculptures are burned to ash to honour nature and time as the great leveller of all human pursuits. By the end of the event there is only the open desert plain with vast skies and breathtaking views of distant mountains, with no trace of the carnival of creative mayhem that played out there for a few short days.
Many people ask me where my inspiration comes from throughout the year. The AfrikaBurn experience is enough to keep the creative juices flowing in abundance for a long time after the dust has settled.
Visit the AfrikaBurn Facebook page to see pictures of the event.
I hope to see you there next year!
Kind regards

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Thuthuzela Aid Community

There is a wonderful lady in my network who sent me this e-mail this week. Naz uses her spare time to do community work at Thuthuleza. She has spoken so elloquently, that I have decided to quote her verbatim...
"Winter is definitely creeping in....can you feel the chill as you wake up each morning? And it is ohhhhh sooo difficult to get out of my warm cozy bed. Out come the winter warmers, gloves, woolen scarves, woolly jerseys and heaters....yep the chill is here and so is winter guys.
Often when I feel the cold, I think of those who have so much less than I do and I wish I could do something to help them. Well this year guys we ARE doing something....are you going to join us???
We're getting together on the 29 May to do a collection for the children of Thuthuzela Aid Community. Thuthuzela is home to abandoned, abused, neglected & orphaned children. Lizzy cares for approx. 20 to 25 children at a time. They range from 5months to about 10 years. (Approx 10 of the children are babies). They are renting space in a building in Marlboro at the moment. (we're hoping to get another property for them, but this is proving quite a challenge). The home has two bedrooms, a kitchen and an office for the 20 or so children. They are constantly in need of nappies & daily necessities as Lizzy tries to run the home as best she can. Most of the help comes from public donations.
You're all invited to join us o the 29 May. We want to collect toys, books, clothing, baby blankets non- perishable food, nappies...anything you donate to the home will be greatly appreciated. More importantly come spend time with these beautiful, precious children. Lizzy has two new babies, Siphelele & Phumi just 5 months old. Join us in sharing a little warmth this winter. Just a hour or two of your time on the 29 May....my challenge to you...make it there! ( especially those who could not make the December drive ;o).

To All those who are continuously supporting us, SHUKRAN! A huge shukran to Warren, Lindsay & Econo - Heat in CTN who are delivering heaters to the orphanages. You guys ROCK!
Date: 29 May 2010 @ 14H00
Venue: Thuthuzela Aid Community Centre,
No 60 -5th Street, Marlboro, Sandton
"All children are ours! Let’s make a difference!""

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Saving The World's Water

When people ask me what my boyfriend does for a living, I am always proud to tell them that he is out saving the world!
My long relationship with dye means that I have used a lot of water over the years, and it became a pre-occupation for me. I am fascinated by it and deeply grateful for its amazing properties. I am constantly looking for better ways to use it in my work.
When I met Anton Louw five years ago, we spent some time exploring each other's fascination with it. We are both submerged in it in our daily lives and work environment. I was amazed a delighted when I learned exactly what it is that he does with it.
He works for a company called Radical Waters (www.radicalwaters.com). He builds machines that are doing away with the use of harmful chemicals like chlorine and caustic soda in industrial cleaning processes. Essentially, they split water into two streams. One stream has a positive electrical charge and the other has a negative electrical charge. It is still basically water. It is just electrically charged. One stream is called Anolyte, the other is called Catholyte.
The amazing thing about this water is that Anolyte completely destroys bacteria. Small single-celled organisms like bacteria hold themselves together with an electrical charge. When they come in contact with Anolyte, they simply disintegrate.
I was a little sceptical that such a simple solution could possibly work. If it is so simple, why is the whole world not using it? Then Anton brought home a drum full of Anolyte for me to try out. Five years later, I cannot imagine a life without Anolyte. I use it for everything.
I clean the toilet and bathroom with it. I clean the kitchen with it. When the cat next door visits to mark his territory, I spray it with a splash of Anolyte and the nasty smell dissipates. I wash my fresh fruit and vegetables with it. I clean wounds with it. My dog once had a nasty deep bite which healed clean in a few short days with regular application. When we go on camping trips to the desert, I wash with it every morning. There is always a spray bottle full of it nearby.
I LOVE Anolyte!
If you would like to learn more about the technology that is changing the world in a positive way, visit their website at www.radicalwaters.com
Have a great day in full colour!
Kind regards