These variations of the “weaponscape: field of armaments” category first appeared on the internet about three years ago, and they can be seen in the markets of Kabul, Herat, and Mashhad. They arrived on the scene at about the same time as tanks began to be replaced by Corollas as borders and decorative infills. What struck us about these designs was the range of non-war motifs (the bus border, limousines, Corollas, luxury cruisers) alongside cruise missiles (?) and vestigial tanks. The (?) is there because our iconographic analysis is closer to guesswork – they look like cruise missiles and stingers, but we’d be happy to be corrected. And luxury cruisers? In the driest land-locked country in the world? Surely these have to be there as objects of desire (or condemnation), a vision of the riches of the outside world? Nobody I spoke to knew their origins, which perhaps suggests “Made in Pakistan”?
The carpet on the left (with brighter blue, and green, with more infill details, and a shy bird) was bought in Mashhad.