Drum Roll 2018
Computer loop animation, color, sound
4K, 00:00:60, 30 fps
NFT-backed digital work

A computer animation of a mass-produced, rusty and faded orange, yellow, and blue steel drum, stacked as a totemic object, spinning and wobbling endlessly on its axis, alluding to a multiplicity of cultural connotations; from oil politics and environmental matters to global economics and its dependency on oil.

The birth of the modern petroleum industry began in 1853 when Jan Józef Ignacy Lukasiewicz, a Polish pharmacist, discovered how to distill kerosene from crude oil and was able to exploit it for lighting, simultaneously creating the kerosene lamp and a brand new industry to replace whale oil as lamp oil. His invention created such a worldwide demand, it prompted American businessman Edwin Drake, hired by the Seneca Oil Company in 1858, to begin drilling for oil in Titusville, Pennsylvania, making him the first American to successfully do so, while simultaneously pioneering a new method for producing oil from the ground that is still employed today by all companies drilling for hydrocarbons. Within a day of Drake's striking oil, his methods were being imitated by others along Oil Creek and in the immediate area, culminating with the establishment of several oil boom towns along the creek. Drake's oil well produced 4.0 m3 (25 barrels) of oil a day. By 1872, the entire area was producing 2,530 m3 (15.9 thousand barrels) of oil a day.

With the vast amount of refined oil that was being produced—becoming a cheap source of energy at the time—came the need for a suitable way to store and transport it. In the beginning, a number of different containers in varying sizes were used, making dealings between the buyer and seller unregulated. A wooden barrel, typically used for whiskey, eventually proved to be the best for its large size and tightness to ensure that its contents could be contained. However, the industry had yet to develop a common standard as these wooden barrels also varied in size depending on their producer. This led in the 1860s to the adoption of the forty-two-gallon barrel ("bbl") as the standard unit of volume for oil to be sold on the market. Today, oil continues to be numerically measured by the barrel—steel or plastic being typical—making its significance in the industry more than just a mere container.