In 1997 British Airways took a turn in their tail designs. They decided to replace their classic union jack design with several designs which were designed by various national and international artists and designers. They did this to represent their various network of destinations. They called it their 'Ethnic Livery'. Views were very mixed on the designs. Margaret Thatcher, for example, hated the designs as they diminished the connotations of British patriotism which were in the original British flag-based design. Here are a few of them:
These designs can be found at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_Airways_ethnic_liveries
In 2001 the designs were all dropped and replaced by the third design in this list which was only in use on BA Concordes at the time. The main reason for this is that BA deduced that it was losing its British identity along with customers. So they developed the entire fleet to have the British based design out of all of them.
All in all though, I feel that it was an nice way of bringing some interest into the area even if it ultimately began to effect BA's profits!