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This art deck by Lo Scarabeo has a couple of interesting features. It is printed with what appears to be a new process that gives the cards a sense of movement. There are alternating bands on the cardstock that pick the light up differently. Thus, when you move the card, it gives an illusion of motion. This is a Major Arcana-only deck. The cards measure 5 13/16" X 3 1/2". The card names and numbers are in the top border in Italian. The art is good. There are several details that the artist has depicted in such a way as to make you take a second look. For example, the woman in the Star gives the appearance of being staidly dressed, but then your mind registers the fact that the dress is more like an open jacket that leaves her exposed. There are several other interesting touches. Some I liked and others I didn’t care for. I like the World card. It shows a pregnant woman with the Moon circling her body. The Sun is made of flaming hair. The Moon is a nude woman wrapped in a veil. I didn’t like the Hanged Man. The hanging figure is dripping from someone’s nose. The backs look like an Escher drawing done in blue.

This deck seems to consist of many moods. Some cards are rather whimsical. For instance, the Fool is shown riding one of those horse-heads on a stick toy that small children play with. The Magician is running a shell game. Other cards are rather ephemeral. The High Priestess seems to melt into haze by the time you get to her feet. The figure in the Moon walks on water. If I had to pick one mood to describe this deck, it would be dreamlike. All of the cards seem to take place in the land of Morpheus. The painting style does not use clearly defined lines and the colors are muted and dreamlike. The effect of the light moving on the cardstock completes the look.

The little booklet for this deck is in Italian. It doesn’t seem to provide card meanings. I think it describes the deck and talks about the artist. Since I don’t read Italian, I can’t say for sure. I am told that this deck will be expanded into a full 78-card deck in the future, and I look forward to seeing the results. The deck is packaged in a slip sleeve case. I recommend this deck for collectors and for those who are looking for something with a dream-like quality.

Tarocchi dell’Immaginario
Publisher: Lo Scarabeo/Distributed by Llewellyn Publishing

This page is Copyright 1999 by Michele Jackson