Those vibrant Pakistani trucks used to be a nuisance to most locals who called them “garish” and “cheap”. However, the increasing global admiration of this vibrant form of art, which is truly unique to Pakistan has changed the how truck art is perceived in Pakistan.
Although foreigners have always been fascinated by Pakistani truck art, recent happenings around the world have taken the industry by storm – if it can technically be called an ‘industry’ as of yet.
After several other projects around the world, Haider Ali, the most renowned Pakistani truck artist, painted a land cruiser in Washington this time, popularizing this unique art form of Pakistan on the streets of Washington and fascinating everyone in the process.
He breathed life into the land cruiser by painting it the beautifully colorful and vibrant phool patti art that his team is famous for.
Haider Ali and his family have been in the business for more than 60 years. He claims, “We [Pakistanis] have perfected this skill and it is the only art form in the Subcontinent which is so unique to us.”
Sadly, it is not as appreciated and admired in our own homeland as it is admired in the global world. There are no art schools in the country that consider it a subject worthy enough to be included in the curriculum.
And though people might call it “cheap” and “garish”, they would be a surprised to know that it costs about 1 million rupees to paint one truck, which is almost the same money required to buy a new truck and it takes about 4 – 5 days of immense hard work to complete it.
Isn’t it time we give it the same admiration and appreciation foreigners are giving to our beautiful truck art?