Arab Seasons by Bokja

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Arab Seasons by Bokja

Lebanese design duo Bokja have created embroidered maps of the Arab world that present a tapestry of changing politics and traditions.

Arab Seasons by Bokja

The first of the two embroideries is entitled Arab Fall,while the second is named Arab Spring and shares its name with the wave of demonstrations and protests that began in 2010.

Arab Seasons by Bokja

On the Arab Fall map, the sea is made from pairs of imported jeans to demonstrate how the rise of imported cultures has led to the replacement of native traditions.

Arab Seasons by Bokja

The Arab Spring map is woven onto the centre of an old carpet, which is intended to represent the worn-out but cherished values of the Arab countries.

Arab Seasons by Bokja

Both tapestries also contain a range of symbolic imagery, which includes a genie eating fast food and a flying elephant.

Arab Seasons by Bokja

Hoda Baroudi and Maria Hibri of Bokja often use vintage Middle Eastern fabrics in their work. See a couple more of their projects here.

Arab Seasons by Bokja

Here's a few more words from the designers:


Bokja's map of the "Arab Fall" interweaves imported jeans as a backdrop for the sad reality of an Arab world where imported fads and fast foods have replaced timeless traditions and native delicacies.

The flying elephant serves as a reminder of all the inane slogans that have been forced upon generations of an incredulous citizenry across the region.

It is this awakening that delineates Bokja's Arab Spring map.

The background is an old valuable carpet (representing our core values) that should be the basis of any new start.

The carpet is in a dilapidated state, like many of our discarded ideals and is in need of resurrection.

The mood is that of optimism and rejuvenation.

The symbols are many, among them a woman riding a horse on the road to a new and unknown world.

  • Svanlic

    Alighiero Boetti ring a bell? Still, some of these are quite nice, but no improvement on the original idea I think…

  • Nasim

    first of all, the rug is Persian not Arab, and secondly such a contrived work, something that Middle-easterns would do for western taste…

    • Bassel

      A Persian rug has been an essential asset in each Arab home since the dawn of the Silk Road. The article did not claim that the rug is Arab made -although such ornate carpets have been woven locally in Syria and Lebanon for centuries-

      So regardless of the carpet's origin, it's a valid symbol to Arab conservative values