Cargo trucks painted in bright colors, with an extremely intricate level of detail, are a common sight on the the highways of Pakistan. The paintings ” often coupled with lines of poetry, religious calligraphy or common phrases ” represent the truck driver’s identity and regional background. The images on the trucks embody a wide range of themes, including landscapes, celebrities, beautiful women, mythical creatures, religious imagery and national heroes.
While these fully functional trucks are used only for transporting goods in South Asia, Asheer Akram, a young American artist from Kansas City, Missouri has embarked on the project of building a Pakistani cargo truck with a Midwestern twist in the hope of mixing venerable South Asian traditions with modern American culture.
“Why can’t I bring this art form to the States to help educate people and promote cultural awareness and understanding,” asks Akram. “I can ” but not without proper funding help from everyday people who would like to see this idea manifest itself in reality,” he explains. Currently, Akram and his team are attempting to raise funds for the Pakistani Cargo Truck Initiative through Kickstarter, where the project has managed to raise a little less than half of their $30,000 goal with 19 more days to go.