Dong Son Drum

The ancient Dong Son drums of Vietnam depicted scenes of daily life and war, animals, birds and boats. They were used as musical instruments as well as cult items and were cast out of bronze between 600 BC – 300 AD. They symbolized wealth and prosperity and were treasured items in local villages. Using landmarks, everyday patterns and other influences from living here and travelling up and down the country I have designed my own personal drum face. I have created a gentle mix of personal experience alongside my own perception of Vietnam. I opted for geometric shapes borrowed from paving stones, electrical wires and patterns we encounter on a day to day basis in Vietnam but rarely pay any attention to. I have tried to capture the character of life here by choosing some of the most popular brands of motorbikes such as the 67, the Cub, the Chaly, the Wave and also some of the bigger Honda’s too. Nestled in between world renowned attractions are local pho shops, street scenes, buildings and some more references too if you can find them.

Pen and pencil illustration digitally manipulated - 80 X 80 cm.

Dong Son Drum

Originally from the North of Vietnam, 'Dong Son Drums' were large, carved brass / bronze drums which depicted scenes of daily life, war, animals and boats fishing. Here I have re-created my own modern version of a drum face using a similar design structure but with street scenes of Vietnam today. In the mix of electrical cables, tourist attractions and patterns found on the street you can make out different brands of popular motorbikes and scenes from around the country. 

This pen and pencil drawing has been digitally manipulated in photoshop to add light tones of colour to replicate the bronze material of the original Dong So Drums.

Original size of the black + White drawing is 80 x 80cm