AfrikaBurn 2023: 24 to 30 April

Ilukuluku and Bright Sparks Transform Cape Flats School

Words and photos: Shaun Sebastian

Though the project, like so many other Creative Grant Recipients which were headed to our 2020 event, will not see the dust this time round, the Ilukuluku Collective have ploughed on regardless with their plans to make a positive impact. To achieve this, the Ilukuluku crew has worked with Bright Sparks project lead Karen Stewart to upgrade and transform Disneyland Educare, a school located on the Cape Flats, with patterns by UK designer and artist Morag Myerscough.
“This project was driven by goodwill and the need to do something meaningful during the COVID lockdown. And we succeeded beyond our wildest dreams. What we are most excited about is the massive impact this will have on the teachers and children when they return to school” says Stewart.

The project was born as part of the Ilukuluku Collective’s legacy project for AfrikaBurn, led by Creative Director, Shaun Sebastian. Initially, they planned to donate painted wooden panels repurposed from their AfrikaBurn project to clad the school walls, but when the festival was cancelled due to Covid-19, Sebastian and Myerscough decided to use all the resources to give back even more to the local community and transform the school completely, while South Africa has been in severe lockdown since March 2020.

After mobilising a team of volunteers including a consulting architect, designers and renowned mural painter Tim Bopper and his team, the school (Disneyland Educare in Tuscany Glen) received the makeover which included extensive structural repairs and a dazzling new paint job.

The painted murals which now cover the school façade, entrance and interiors were designed by Myerscough. Her work incorporates bold geometric patterns and bright colours to create a space that inspires, stimulates learning and also feels safe, nurturing and playful. The entire upgrade was completed in less than two weeks while the school was vacant due to the lockdown, and on a minimal budget as all the paint used for the upgrade was donated. The painting of the patterns was done in 4 days.
“This project is very dear to my heart and since its inception in February 2018 when I first met with Morag to talk about the Temple of Curiosity for AfrikaBurn, our collective has been working around to clock to see it come to life. Countless hours have gone into preparing the artwork and the crew have made massive personal sacrifices. Engineers, architects, and artists, who are all part of our collective, have tirelessly worked to push the boundaries and ultimately, achieve the impossible.” said Sebastian. “We continue our work until we build our Temple of Curiosity at AfrikaBurn.”

After seeing the transformation and upgrades to the school, school principal, Priscilla Collison, said “This is a new beginning for us. From now on we will be a top-notch school.”
About Morag Myerscough
The award-winning and prolific designer/artist Morag Myerscough’s mantra is “make happy those who are near and those who are far will come.” Myerscough has always been fascinated by how words, colour, pattern and structures can change environments and people’s perceptions of spaces into places.
About the ILUKULUKU Collective
Ilukuluku Collective, founded in 2018, collaborates with artists, architects and volunteers. Guided by AfrikaBurn’s 11 guiding principles, they uphold the ethos of the Burner community and culture.
About Bright Sparks
Bright Sparks is a creative play extra mural for children aged 1-6 years, focussed on improving educational outcomes for children in under resourced communities. The organisation also supports women who want to do business in the disadvantaged communities of the Western Cape, but lack know-how and access to finance to get started. Early Childhood teachers are expertly trained to run creative extra murals from their school.
For more information, email [email protected]

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