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 Image: Title: Subject: Narrative:

1. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke.
Permission to use any image or material from this site should be requested from The Nickle Arts Museum.
http://library.ucalgary.ca/services/digitization-and-repository-services/copyright
War rugs--Afghanistan--History--20th century ; War rugs--Middle East--History--20th century ; War rugs--Asia, Central--History--20th century ; Afghanistan--Politics and government, 1973-1989 ; Afghanistan--History--Soviet occupation, 1979-1989 ; Najibullah, Mohammad, 1947-1996 This rug is a variation of the Najibullah rugs. Beside the wide-eyed Najibullah, is Uncle Sam’s Hat with an AK-47 protruding from it. It speaks to the foreign occupation and control of Afghanistan. The map of Afghanistan behind the figures is typically green (for an Islamic state?)—here it is white. As in the other rugs of this type, the red area above Afghanistan is figured with Soviet vehicles, while the blue area below is filled with people and animals.

2. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke.
Permission to use any image or material from this site should be requested from The Nickle Arts Museum.
http://library.ucalgary.ca/services/digitization-and-repository-services/copyright
War rugs--Afghanistan--History--20th century ; War rugs--Afghanistan--History 21st century ; War rugs--Middle East--History--20th century ; War rugs--Middle East--History--21st century ; War rugs--Asia, Central--History--20th century ; War rugs--Asia, Central--History--21st century ; Amanullah Khan, Amir of Afghanistan, 1892-1960 Shah Amanullah Khan was ruler of Afghanistan between 1919 and 1929. A controversial leader, he attempted to modernize and liberalize Afghanistan through various reforms. At the time Afghanistan was a pawn in the “Great Game” played between Britain and Russia for control of Central Asia. Amanullah Khan attacked the British and initiated the Third Anglo-Afghan War gaining independence for Afghanistan in 1921. Shown in dress uniform, his upright, robust figure stands for renewed nationalism.

3. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke.
Permission to use any image or material from this site should be requested from The Nickle Arts Museum.
http://library.ucalgary.ca/services/digitization-and-repository-services/copyright
War rugs--Afghanistan--History--20th century ; War rugs--Afghanistan--History 21st century ; War rugs--Middle East--History--20th century ; War rugs--Middle East--History--21st century ; War rugs--Asia, Central--History--20th century ; War rugs--Asia, Central--History--21st century; Military weapons ; Vehicles, Miliary ; Maps, Afghanistan This carpet was likely woven in a workshop in a refugee camp in Pakistan. Many war rugs from period have become ‘poster-like’ in size, in feel (very dense and hard) and with the use of strong hard-edged graphics on a white ground. This piece depicts a variety of arms and vehicles of Soviet manufacture arranged around and on a green map of Afghanistan. The diagonal band protruding from the top of the map is the ‘Friendship Bridge”, formerly used to transport supplies to Russian soldiers, but here depicting their exodus. The Dari language inscriptions refer to their departure.

4. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke.
Permission to use any image or material from this site should be requested from The Nickle Arts Museum.
http://library.ucalgary.ca/services/digitization-and-repository-services/copyright
War rugs--Afghanistan--History--20th century ; War rugs--Middle East--History--20th century ; War rugs--Asia, Central--History--20th century ; Afghanistan--Politics and government, 1989-2001 ; Afghanistan--History--Soviet occupation, 1979-1989 ; Najibullah, Mohammad, 1947-1996 Mohammad Najibullah Ahmadzai was the last president of the Democratic Republic of Afghanistan, left in power by the Soviets after their withdrawal in 1989. He was detested by the Taliban for being anti-Islamic and a Communist. In 1996, after the Taliban seized Kabul, he was tortured and hung. His image here with the Soviet hand holding him in place is a graphic reminder of the lingering effects of the Cold War.

5. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke.
Permission to use any image or material from this site should be requested from The Nickle Arts Museum.
http://library.ucalgary.ca/services/digitization-and-repository-services/copyright
War rugs--Afghanistan--History--21st century ; War rugs--Middle East--History--21st century ; War rugs--Asia, Central--History--21st century ; Tanks ; Helicopters This rug is a variation on the Najibullah rugs where the beleaguered Afghan president has been replaced by Uncle Sam’s top hat with a protruding AK-47 rifle. It is surrounded by a variety of armed soldiers, weapons, grenades, and a butterfly mine. On the red ground above the Afghan map are several Russian tanks and helicopters; on the blue ground below and to the right of the map are camels with riders a number of farm animals and people. Perhaps they are meant as reminders of the scores of Afghan refugees living and working in camps in Pakistan.

6. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke.
Permission to use any image or material from this site should be requested from The Nickle Arts Museum.
http://library.ucalgary.ca/services/digitization-and-repository-services/copyright
War rugs--Afghanistan--History--21st century ; War rugs--Middle East--History--21st century ; War rugs--Asia, Central--History--21st century ; September 11 Terrorist Attacks, 2001 On September 11, 2001 at 8:46am American Airlines Flight 11 crashed into the North Tower of the World Trade Center in New York. Seven minutes later, at 9:03am, United Airlines Flight 175 hit the South Tower. This rug depicts the impact of the two towers hovering above a US aircraft carrier and a deployed missile. Behind the towers is a green map of Afghanistan, in front of them the twinned flags of Afghanistan and the United States with a dove of peace.

7. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke.
Permission to use any image or material from this site should be requested from The Nickle Arts Museum.
http://library.ucalgary.ca/services/digitization-and-repository-services/copyright
War rugs--Afghanistan--History--20th century ; War rugs--Middle East--History--20th century ; War rugs--Asia, Central--History--20th century ; Airplanes, Military ; Tanks ; Helicopters Where traditional Afghan rugs feature memory-based designs—typically small, geometric, repeated motifs—this carpet replaces those with more representational motifs. The Soviet arms and military vehicles depicted attest to the changing conditions of weaving production as well as the critical importance recognizing threats would have played to the weavers and their families.

8. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke.
Permission to use any image or material from this site should be requested from The Nickle Arts Museum.
http://library.ucalgary.ca/services/digitization-and-repository-services/copyright
War rugs--Afghanistan--History--20th century ; War rugs--Afghanistan--History 21st century ; War rugs--Middle East--History--20th century ; War rugs--Middle East--History--21st century ; War rugs--Asia, Central--History--20th century ; War rugs--Asia, Central--History--21st century ; Tanks Like “Eight Tank Rug” (2009.001.000), this rug features two vertical rows of Soviet BTR60 Armoured Personnel Carriers, the topmost turned upside down. Although the same date has been given to both rugs, this one appears slightly later given its simplified border, the absence of knotted fringes, and the introduction of bright colours and new motifs including AK-47s and MiG 21 jet fighters.

9. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke.
Permission to use any image or material from this site should be requested from The Nickle Arts Museum.
http://library.ucalgary.ca/services/digitization-and-repository-services/copyright
War rugs--Afghanistan--History--20th century ; War rugs--Middle East--History--20th century ; War rugs--Asia, Central--History--20th century ; Tanks It is unclear what the dark, horned figure in the centre of this ominous carpet represents, however, the red instrument protruding from it is likely a Soviet ZPU-4 Anti-Aircraft machine gun or a ZSU-23-4 Anti-Aircraft Weapon System. Both systems have four gun barrels. Several vehicles can be identified, including a BTR-60 Armoured Personnel Carrier (border, bottom left, third vehicle from the bottom), and a BRDM-2 combat Reconnaissance Vehicle (on the black ‘head’ in the centre). There are also a number of inscriptions in Dari and possibly Russian. The short, Dari inscriptions offer various numbers and dates, the longer inscriptions on the dark ‘head’ refer to the ‘Islamic Government of Afghanistan’, and a ‘my home and country’.

10. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke.
Permission to use any image or material from this site should be requested from The Nickle Arts Museum.
http://library.ucalgary.ca/services/digitization-and-repository-services/copyright
War rugs--Afghanistan--History--20th century ; War rugs--Middle East--History--20th century ; War rugs--Asia, Central--History--20th century ; Tanks ; Vehicles, Military ; Airplanes, Military The origins of war rugs is often linked to the Baluch peoples living near the city of Herat in Western Afghanistan. Here, it is believed, the Soviet military presence inspired women to begin incorporating new motifs into their weavings. The floppy feel of this rug combined with its glossy wool, goat’s hair selvedges and the combination of traditional and novel motifs suggest it is an early attempt, woven by a Baluch woman on a horizontal loom.

11. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke.
Permission to use any image or material from this site should be requested from The Nickle Arts Museum.
http://library.ucalgary.ca/services/digitization-and-repository-services/copyright
War rugs--Afghanistan--History--20th century ; War rugs--Middle East--History--20th century ; War rugs--Asia, Central--History--20th century ; Airplanes, Military ; Afghanistan--Social life and customs The arrival of the Soviets into Afghanistan in 1979 encouraged widespread displacement and migration. Some estimates suggest 3.2 million Afghans migrated to Pakistan, 2.3 million to Iran and others to India, Turkey, US, Canada, Australia and various European countries. This rug was likely woven by an Afghan Baluch woman, near Mashhad, a city in eastern Iran. The lobed medallions and white-ground are inspired by the local carpet weaving traditions. It features motifs that are traditional and novel, including Soviet aircraft, possibly the SU-15, SU-25 or Mig-21. Without the use of Afghan immigrant weavers, Iran’s participation in the international hand-woven carpet market would be limited.

12. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke.
Permission to use any image or material from this site should be requested from The Nickle Arts Museum.
http://library.ucalgary.ca/services/digitization-and-repository-services/copyright
War rugs--Afghanistan--History--20th century ; War rugs--Afghanistan--History--21st century ; Afghanistan--Social life and customs There are increasing numbers of carpets featuring Afghan cityscapes and heritage sites. This one represents a clock tower, likely in Kabul with a river and rows of vehicles. It is surrounded by a particularly bold, traditional border. From the vantage point of an outsider, it functions like a postcard; evoking memories of visited places and events. It is also possible, however, that it speaks to an emergent Afghan nationalism, celebrating local history.

13. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke.
Permission to use any image or material from this site should be requested from The Nickle Arts Museum.
http://library.ucalgary.ca/services/digitization-and-repository-services/copyright
War rugs--Afghanistan--History--21st century ; War rugs--Middle East--History--21st century ; War rugs--Asia, Central--History--21st century ; Helicopter ; Vehicles, Military ; Military weapons Like 2009.033.000, this rug is a variation on the Najibullah rugs where the beleaguered Afghan president has been replaced by Uncle Sam’s top hat with a protruding AK-47 rifle. It is surrounded by a variety of armed soldiers, weapons and grenades. On the red ground above the Afghan map are several Russian tanks, some with riders, and helicopters. On the blue ground below and to the right of the map are camels with riders and a woman with a loom. They are reminders of the scores of Afghan refugees living and working in camps along the Pakistan border.

14. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke.
Permission to use any image or material from this site should be requested from The Nickle Arts Museum.
http://library.ucalgary.ca/services/digitization-and-repository-services/copyright
War rugs--Afghanistan--History--20th century ; War rugs--Afghanistan--History--21st century ; Afghanistan--Social life and customs ; Tanks This rug features vertical rows of Soviet BTR60 Armoured Personnel Carriers with an intricate border. Woven by Baluch weavers, it has much in common with traditional designs. The repetition of motifs on these rugs and their simplification suggests their possible role as aids for the recognition of weapons.

15. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke.
Permission to use any image or material from this site should be requested from The Nickle Arts Museum.
http://library.ucalgary.ca/services/digitization-and-repository-services/copyright
War rugs--Afghanistan--History--20th century ; War rugs--Afghanistan--History--21st century ; Afghanistan--Social life and customs ; Military weapons These tiny rugs are often suggested to be “practice” rugs woven by refugee children. This one depicts a Soviet Makarov semi-automatic pistol beside a tank, a helicopter, and what may be a butterfly mine (PFM-1). The inscription “Qurban” refers to sacrifice. Afghan rugs with this mustard yellow colour are also referred to as ‘chobi’ referring to yellow wood. The colour actually comes from isparak, a local plant that produces a yellow dye.

16. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke.
Permission to use any image or material from this site should be requested from The Nickle Arts Museum.
http://library.ucalgary.ca/services/digitization-and-repository-services/copyright
War rugs--Afghanistan--History--20th century ; Afghanistan--Social life and customs ; Military weapons A tiny rug, likely a practice piece, features a Soviet ZSU-23-4 Anti-aircraft Weapon System, on a mint green ground.

17. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke.
Permission to use any image or material from this site should be requested from The Nickle Arts Museum.
http://library.ucalgary.ca/services/digitization-and-repository-services/copyright
War rugs--Afghanistan--History--20th century ; War rugs--Afghanistan--History--21st century ; Afghanistan--History--Soviet occupation, 1979-1989 ; Afghanistan--Politics and government--1989-2001 ; Military weapons This rug commemorates the departure of Soviet forces from Afghanistan. On the “Friendship Bridge”, heading north, are three Soviet BTR 60A Armoured Personnel Carriers. On the bloody red map of Afghanistan are what appear to be Soviet Mil Mi-24 Helicopters (aka Hind) with three Mil Mi-28 Helicopters (aka Havoc) in the air above the map. The rug also features AK-47s, several grenades, and two RPG 7V Grenade Launchers. The inscription refers to the departure of the Soviets.

18. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke.
Permission to use any image or material from this site should be requested from The Nickle Arts Museum.
http://library.ucalgary.ca/services/digitization-and-repository-services/copyright
War rugs--Afghanistan--History--20th century ; War rugs--Middle East--History--20th century ; War rugs--Asia, Central--History--20th century ; Afghanistan--History--Soviet occupation, 1979-1989 ; Afghanistan--Politics and government--1973-1989 This early war rug depicts the “Friendship Bridge” linking northern Afghanistan and Uzbekistan. Built by the Soviets in 1982, it was used to transport troops and supplies until their withdrawal in 1989. On either side of the bridge are landing barges, ostensibly from Hungary. They are inscribed with a date corresponding to June/July 1990, Ghor (the name of an Afghan province), “Ihumagrh” (Hungary?) and the Dari word for carpet (kaleen).

19. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke.
Permission to use any image or material from this site should be requested from The Nickle Arts Museum.
http://library.ucalgary.ca/services/digitization-and-repository-services/copyright
War rugs--Afghanistan--History--20th century ; War rugs--Afghanistan--History 21st century ; War rugs--Middle East--History--20th century ; War rugs--Middle East--History--21st century ; War rugs--Asia, Central--History--20th century ; War rugs--Asia, Central--History--21st century This rug was woven by Baluch weavers in a region known as Zakni or Zakini between Herat and Farah in western Afghanistan. A precursor to war rugs, it features the repetitive, geometric patterning common among tribal weavers.

20. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke. This collection is owned by the University of Calgary, Nickle Arts Museum and was donated by Robert Fyke.
Permission to use any image or material from this site should be requested from The Nickle Arts Museum.
http://library.ucalgary.ca/services/digitization-and-repository-services/copyright
War rugs--Afghanistan--History--21st century ; War rugs--Middle East--History--21st century ; War rugs--Asia, Central--History--21st century This rug represents a new development in Afghan rug production with its almost photographic realism. The vehicles are shown receding into the background and, in some cases, driving away from the viewer. The minimal border and the fact it is woven sideways enhances the panoramic sweep of the Kabul cityscape. Like “Clock Tower I” (2009.003.000), it features a modern looking tower with a clock face. Students have commented on the prevalence of red, green and black in the rug—the colours of the Afghan flag.
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