This design was inspired by the Unswept Floor mosaics found in Roman archeological sites. Dating from around the 2nd Century BC, these floors are trompe l'oeil (asàrotos òikos) depictions of the debris from an extravagant meal or party. The floors suggest that whomever dines in these rooms has so much excess and so little regard with proper table manners, that they feel comfortable just throwing half eaten food, bones, and vegetables the floor. These Unswept Floors suggest arrogance, excess, empire, and a disregard for conventional behavior.
I photographed typical American trash, much of it found near my studio in downtown Los Angeles, and California produce. The border is the design of the railings of the Fourth Street Bridge, which spans across the Los Angeles River nearby. The translation of the American trash into a carpet mimics the ancient mosaics, while adding a political dimension specific to the continued presence of American forces in Afghanistan.
The original design included Budweiser, Tecate, and Sierra Nevada beer cans and bottles, but I was asked to remove them in deference to the Muslim weavers.