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Playing cards have been with us since the 14th century, when they first became a part of popular culture, perhaps seen as a miniature model of the universe. Over the centuries packs of cards, in all shapes and sizes, have been used for games, gambling, education, conjuring, advertising, fortune telling, political messages or the portrayal of national or ethnic identity. Their popularity is undoubtedy due to the imaginative artwork and graphic design which is sometimes overlooked, and the “then & now” of how things have changed.

Latest Articles

Rush Hour

Posted by Simon Wintle •  April 30, 2017 at 08:00am

“Rush Hour” by Universal Publications Ltd, London, c.1935 Read more →

Fair Play cross cultural playing cards

Posted by Simon Wintle •  April 19, 2017 at 02:45pm

“Fair Play” cross cultural playing cards illustrated by Canadian artist Stephen B. MacInnes Read more →

Progressive Whist Cards

Posted by Simon Wintle •  April 18, 2017 at 08:12pm

There are references to “progressive whist” or “whist drives” during the 19th and early years of the 20th century but this form of the game came into its own during the 1920s and 30s Read more →

Scottish Picture Playing Cards

Posted by Simon Wintle •  April 18, 2017 at 02:15pm

Scottish Picture Playing Cards featuring photographs by Colin Baxter, 1987 Read more →

Divine Art Playing Cards - Relaunch Blog Post

Posted by Simon Wintle •  April 18, 2017 at 12:00am

Divine Art Playing Cards by Sunish Chabba & Guru Playing Card Company, 2016. Read more →

Aleister Crowley Tarot – the sombre luminary

Posted by Simon Wintle •  April 12, 2017 at 06:58pm

Aleister Crowley Tarot - Crowley and Lady Freda Harris worked on the illustrations between 1938 and 1943 Read more →

East African Playing Cards

Posted by Simon Wintle •  April 11, 2017 at 06:56pm

East African Playing Cards by Heraclio Fournier S.A., 1957 Read more →

Chérie

Posted by Simon Wintle •  April 08, 2017 at 11:16am

Chérie No 7022 designed by Hans & Louise Neupert, nice vibrant artwork, swinging 60s Read more →

The Summer Palace

Posted by Simon Wintle •  April 07, 2017 at 04:44pm

The Summer Palace, Beijing, China, c.1998 Read more →

Adelaide Casino

Posted by Simon Wintle •  April 06, 2017 at 07:46pm

Adelaide Casino by Spicers Paper Ltd, 1987 Read more →

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