Gaucho Playing Cards
Florencio Molina Campos habia nacido en Buenos Aires el 21 de agosto de 1891 y fallecio en su ciudad natal el 16 de noviembre de 1959. "Hizo Sonreir a Muchos Millones". El concepto del honor, de la hospitalidad, del coraje, del sacrificio, de la modestia, que Molina Campos atribuia al gaucho fueron sus propias e intimas virtudes.
Florencio de los Ángeles Molina Campos was born in Buenos Aires on August 21st, 1891. In 1926, Molina Campos displayed his first exhibition in the Sociedad Rural Argentina. In 1931, the painter travelled to Europe for the first time and displayed his work in Paris. In 1942, Molina Campos strengthened his friendship with Walt Disney and was hired to advise a team of cartoonists in three films that were going to be produced by Disney. The films were set in Argentina and were based on the artist’s work and on the landscapes they had seen. The artwork for his series of playing cards was produced from 1944 to 1958. On November 16th, 1959, a terminal disease overcame him. He died in Buenos Aires.
Above: eight cards from Naipes Criollos ® "Molina Campos", published by F. Molina Campos Ediciones, Silvio L. Ruggieri 2758 casa 18, C1425DLB - Buenos Aires, 2004. The court cards show characters from the artist's very popular paintings of gaucho life. The suit signs are non-standard variations on the Spanish-suit theme. Some editions with advertising slogans are also known.
Above: cards from a later edition of Naipes Criollos ® "Molina Campos", published by F. Molina Campos Ediciones, Buenos Aires. The court cards show different characters of gaucho life from the above edition, the Jokers are numbered and sets come with a series of different back designs in a presentation box including a biographical leaflet.
On a visit to an estanco, one may still find a gaucho at work, maybe a domador beaking horses.
Right: four of cups from a 'Domador' deck made by Cia Gral Fabril Financiera S.A., Buenos Aires, in c.1945. A gaucho's pride is still his horse.
Although true gaucho culture ended in the late 19th century, much remains today. The job of ranch hand has become known as "paisano".
Left: four of cups from a 'Paisanito' deck made by E. Flaiban, Buenos Aires, in c.1950.
Other Gaucho themed packs
Songs and poems of the gaucho tradition reflect themes of love and nostalgia; many are political in nature and deal with the injustices of life.
Above: Naipes Argentinos para Truco "Falta Envido" created by Alberto Soifer and printed by Adans S.A., Buenos Aires, 1982. more →
Above: Naipes Casino Estilo Argentino published by Justo Rodero, c.1955, with Gaucho suit symbols more →
Above: Baraja Gaucha with Gaucho suit symbols published by Naipes Fournier specially for Argentina, 1999.