Taru Ajak, Tribe of the River Danyek header image

I wanted to use the first project on my MA to move away from my laptop and get my hands dirty with some raw materials. The brief required creating an imaginary world, and an early idea that seemed to stick was the invention an ancient tribe yet to be discovered by mankind (until now).

I used the project to experiment with language/glyph creation, clay modeling and watercolour/ink composition and storytelling. I drew some parallels with visual aspects of Mayan culture as well as other (mainly pop culture) references to fit a modern theme.

So the story goes, an expedition was led by wealthy aristocrat Antoine Belvoir to the Boran Province of the River Danyek in 1914, during which time they unearthed a series of mysterious relics; stone tablets, decorative tiles and household items like cups and jars. The markings on these relics were inconsistent with any others that had been found previously which led to the formal discovery of the Taru Ajak - an ancient civilisation that had lived on the river.

Ancient glyph concept
Ancient glyph sketches
Tribal tablet illustration