Handbuilding Video – Sound Advice: An Expert Udu Drum Maker Shares Tips for Making Coil Built Forms That Can Take A Beating

Making an udu drum (narrow-necked, vaselike clay instruments - see image below) involves coil-building and hump-mold techniques and, as you can imagine, the forms need to be strong since they, literally, must be able to take a beating. Frank Giorgini first learned to make udu drums  in 1974 at a workshop taught by Nigerian udu drum maker Abbas M. Ahuwan and he has been perfecting his technique ever since.

Obviously, I can’t show the entire process here, but today I decided to excerpt a couple of Frank’s techniques because they are applicable to any kind of coil-built form. Whether you plan to make a drum or not, these tips will help you make forms that are both beautiful and structurally sound.  - Jennifer Harnetty, editor.


 
 

Comments
  • One of Frank’s Udu drums as well as his tiles are on display at the “Journey’s in Clay ” Exhibit, GCCA Mountaintop Gallery, Main Street, Windham, NY until August 30. 518-734-3104. Curated by Ruth Sachs.

  • The video was very interesting, not just to make udu drums, but to make another pieces of that size. I would like to see more.

  • This was an excellent lesson on handbuilding.

  • Fascinating and otherwise excellent video! Can’t afford any more goodies at this time but if’n I could, this would be on the top of the list! Thanks so much.

  • Great, what’s it sound like?
    show us some finished pots.

  • Frank does an excellent job speaking as he works. Not easy to do! Very well done video.

  • I am glad that I watched because it taught me a lot about how to shape clay. I have begun my first clay program at the elementary school level. I am 65 and not a young art teacher, the last time I did any clay work was 30 years ago at college and that was in a sculpture class. Not really the same as making small bowls and pinch pots K-5.
    Thanks for the video!

  • bello il video , interessante la tecnica che io utilizzo i modo molto meno preciso e qui di ora cercherò di fare meglio, e bellissimo il suono che producono questi tamburi udu. per me è molto più difficile perchè non conosco la lingiua e devo basarmi solo sulle immagini e quel che riesco a trovere nelle note scritte.
    per fortuna esiste google traslate
    nice video, an interesting technique that I use the much less precise hours and here I will try to do better, and the beautiful sound they make these drums udu. is much more difficult for me because I do not know the lingiua basarmi and only on the pictures and what I can find in the notes written.
    Fortunately, there is google translated

Enter Your Log In Credentials
This setting should only be used on your home or work computer.

Larger version of the image

Send this to a friend