If you’re familiar with India or Pakistan, you’ve probably already heard about jingle trucks— the uber-colourful, neon-soaked and meticulously decorated trucks that invade the streets. But as many Indians and Pakistanis live around the world, jingle trucks have also made it to Jeddah.
Dazzling jingle trucks have fascinated 23-year-old Jeddah-native Lina Jamjoom for years; so exactly a year ago she finally decided to create an Instagram account, aptly titled @jingletrucks, celebrating the undocumented but rich truck art culture in Jeddah. “I went to a volunteering trip in an industrial area of Jeddah called Karantina, filled with jingle trucks! I was so overwhelmed with all the crazy details”, she says referring to the moment she realised she had to capture Jeddah’s jingle trucks and create a photo-series.
Trucks have reached cult status among many Pakistanis. More than just cultural or artistic expression, trucks have become the ultimate sign of social recognition. Essentially, the flamboyancy of the truck symbolizes the status of the owner. And this is why some Pakistanis end up investing huge amount of money on their trucks. But for those who live abroad, jingle trucks are even more than that; they literally become their home away from home. As Jamjoom explains, “Owners put a lot of effort into making them very personal”.
Two weeks ago, on the day of her birthday, she found a jingle truck parked just outside her office. “I waited for the owner to come back and asked if he could photograph me inside his truck. That moment made my day”, she says.