This September saw the Fak’ugesi African Digital Innovation Festival once again transform Johannesburg, South Africa into a celebration of technology, creativity, collaboration and innovation from across the African continent with the theme of ‘brave tech hearts beat as one’
The festival, which is centred on pioneering uniquely African technology and creativity in an electrifying ten-day programme to showcase the power of innovative collaboration, has been running since 2014 and the experience only gets better as the years go by.
Fak’ugesi was originally founded by Prof Christo Doherty and Tegan Bristow from Wits Digital Arts, together with Prof Barry Dwolatzky from the Joburg Centre for Software Engineering (JCSE). From the isiZulu term meaning “add power” or “put on the electricity”, Fak’ugesi acts as a platform that brings together diverse digital and technology sectors to collaborate and share skills in digital media and technology innovation.
The Tshimologong Precinct located at Braamfontein, Johannesburg will be at the heart of festivities to include opportunities for attendees to meet, play and share at a variety of seminars, talks, exhibitions, workshops, hack-a-thons, music, films, artists, games, innovation riots and much more.
The primary sponsors for Fak’ugesi 2017 WERE the Tshimologong Precinct, Ericsson, IBM Research | Africa and Red Bull. Secondary sponsors included UN Habitat, City of Johannesburg and Maxum Digital (Innovation Hub). They are joined by the festival’s cultural partners Pro Helvetia & ANT Fund, British Council ConnectZA, French Institute, Canada 150, University of Dundee, Wits School of the Arts, NEoN Festival and Weheartbeat.
2017 Festival Director, Tegan Bristow, had quite a lot to say about the festival this year “Some incredible highlights at this year’s festival included the Fak’ugesi Conference, the hugely popular Making Weekend, as well as our annual Market Hack event at the Nieghbourgoods Market in Braamfontein. We’re also thrilled to announce an exciting new curatorial partnership titled Fak’ugesi Beats, a beats, music and technology focus curated by We Heart Beat, who will go on to lead festival finale Beats Bloc Party as part of their larger program.”