Vanessa Thill wrote an an interesting piece about war rugs for Artsy. which reaffirms Alighiero Boetti’s influence on world map rugs.
Alighiero Boetti, Mappa, 1983-1984
Despite decades of war, ancient pattern techniques that can take months or years to complete are still passed from mother to daughter. Testimony from the makers of these carpets is difficult to obtain, as many of these works remain unattributed, and the female weavers lack easy access to modes of international communication. But the largest online archive of Afghan war rugs, maintained by New York–based artist Kevin Sudeith, offers information and an online store. Still, the weavers’ authorship is often lost when these works go to market, yet their masterful compositions reveal a dark humor and complex commentary on contemporary life.
In the carpets’ compositions, perspectival viewpoints merge and flatten to integrate three-dimensional forms with maps and repeating decorative patterns. Some of the rug designs are based on Charbagh, a quadrilateral layout inspired by the four gardens of Paradise described in the Qur’an. Another genre of rugs depicts national maps of Afghanistan, which may have been influenced by Alighiero Boetti’s map series.The Italian Conceptual artist traveled to Afghanistan and Pakistan in the 1980s and worked with female weavers, first in Kabul and later in Peshawar, to create brightly colored tapestries depicting world maps with national flags labeled with bold text. In keeping with his interest in chance, Boetti sometimes left the color choices up to the women.
Because many artists shy away from this touchy subject matter, Dixon found unlikely peers in the anonymous rug weavers. The horrors of violence and the destruction of everyday life manifests in these carpets with an absurd levity. Dixon first created her own version in 2010—not woven but cut from colorful yoga mats. She described the work as an homage to the carpet weavers—and a jab at the United States’s commercialized relationship to war.
Leah Dixon, Don’t See a Need for Middlemen I, 2017–19.
Opinion: The Secret Death Toll of America’s Drones
The Pentagon says American airstrikes in Somalia have killed no civilians since President Trump accelerated attacks against Shabab militants there two years ago.
Amnesty International investigated five of the more than 100 strikes carried out in Somalia since 2017 by drones and manned aircraft, and in just that small sampling found that at least 14 civilians were killed.
The Pentagon says airstrikes by the American-led coalition fighting the Islamic State killed at least 1,257 civilians in Iraq and Syria as of the end of January.
Airwars, a university-based monitoring group, estimates that those strikes killed at least 7,500 civilians in those countries.
Those disparities show how poorly the American public understands the human cost of an air war fought largely by remote-controlled drones. Drones have been the main weapon in the counterterrorism fight for more than a decade. They kill extremists without risking American lives, making combat seem antiseptic on the home front. But the number of civilians killed in these attacks is shrouded in secrecy.
Similar drone rug available here
The Metropolitan Museum in New York has made a tremendous contribution to the public domain by releasing hundreds of thousands of photos under a Creative Commons Zero license. The Museum has made available a wealth of information licensed for almost any use. Here are a few examples found in a search for “weaving”.
Not only am I into the art of presenting and selling war rugs but, I’m also a rock sculptor, reviving the original carvings through impressions presented at the Mike Weiss Gallery. Check out this write up on NPR, written by contributor, Alva Noe : http://www.npr.org/sections/13.7/2016/04/23/474717276/making-art-from-life
Kris Scheifele wrote a conversational piece about my work for NY Arts Magazine.
Inspired by the human activity surrounding the rock outcroppings that serve as his canvas, Sudeith uses transportation motifs to explore his primary subjects: food, energy, and scientific exploration.
This rug combines a ‘Banana Pattern’ with a Adreskani or Kowdani mihrab.
UPDATE: The rug above is my very favorite. Note willful abrash in green and the fluorescent pink just off center.
Like Rug 34. This is my favorite rug of all.
or Rug 95