There are two Aces to each suit; one plain and the other with figures of a young woman and man, presumably Merry Andrew and his girl-friend.
“Triton”, KG31, was published by Karl Gerich in 1989 trading as Victoria Playing Card Co with double-ended courts based on the XP17 or “Bongoût” pattern of Van Genechen and other Turnhout makers.
The Aces are decorated with the pip in a central circle and two different figures at each end of the card. The courts are lavishly illustrated.
"Cartes Turques" was published in 1985. Intricate designs with a hint of orientalism, double borders and distinctive pips.
The English Playing Card Society's 10th Anniversary Transformation Playing Cards designed and produced by Karl Gerich, 1993
‘Aquae Sulis’ is Georgina Harvey's second design, in which the double-ended courts are reminiscent of classical gods & goddesses. ‘Aquae Sulis’ refers to the City of Bath: Sulis was the local Celtic goddess of the thermal springs that still feed the spa baths, which the Romans called ‘Aquae Sulis’ (“the waters of Sulis”).
Karl enjoyed experimenting with design and production and this work was published in 1994 as a 32-card pack with one joker. The double-ended courts are, by Gerich's standards, plain with simple costume designs based on the designs of Arturs Duburs.
Karl Gerich's ‘Deutche Karten’ playing cards No.9, printed from copperplate etchings.
The first entry in the catalogue, dating from c.1982, shows full-length figures with their symbols of office (mace, orb, halberd, sword, flower, etc.) after the early English style.
Views of Bath is Georgina Harvey's third design, created in 1990. The cards feature beautifully designed double-ended courts and double-ended Aces with a central band which is used to identify different views of the City of Bath at each end.
As far as is known, ‘Rouennais’ has only ever been produced as a sheet of etched court cards and aces. The designs are supposed to be based on the early playing cards produced in Rouen (France) which became the antecedents of the standard English pattern.
Karl's ‘Ganesh’ pack has the four Aces with the suit sign in a circle decorated with flowers and double-ended courts in Indian dress.
Inspired by Piatnik's ‘Trappola’ of c.1890, with double-ended courts, a Jester and decorated Aces, the cards are delicately etched and hand coloured so that versions exist with alternative colour schemes.
Derived from “Cartes Turques” first made by Glanz, then later by van Genechten, Brepols & Piatnik. 3 double-ended dragon Aces and one Adam/Eve Ace with a coiled serpent. The Courts & Joker are in oriental costume. The title card shows Karl's phoenix motif & a banner with the legend: “Resurgam”.
Karl Gerich's “Patience Indien No.16”, published in 1991, is adapted from Grimaud's “Whist Indienne” (c.1900). The double-ended courts are dressed in Arab garb.
‘Patience No.21’ is a 52-card miniature deck with double-ended courts and a Joker holding a fan of cards. The figures in this pack are much simpler than many of Gerich's courts - partly reflecting the limited space available. The designs are inspired by ‘Salon No.66’ by V.S.S., originally a Büttner design.
Variations on the standard English pattern are one of Karl's favourite themes. He produced several versions and this is a magnificent example.
The courts are characters from Wagner's opera “The Ring of the Nibelungs”, beautifully etched and hand coloured. Each character is named in a cursive script along each side of the card.
“Victoria Playing Cards” designed by Georgina Harvey and produced by Karl Gerich, Bath (UK), 1988. Printed from copperplate etching; hand-coloured.
Double-ended courts based on standard English pattern but with variant colours; double-ended Joker plus Steve Davis card.
Karl Gerich's 12th deck is titled “Rheinland Playing Cards” and was published in 1991. lt is derived from Dondorf's Rhineland pattern, which was first published in the 1870s.
Four Elements is Karl's third attempt at manufacturing playing cards. An original design based around the theme of the four elements of earth, wind, fire and water, hand-coloured in strong yellows and oranges, with red and pale lilac.
An unpublished design by Karl Gerich showing 12 court cards, a Joker and two additional cards produced from an etching. The number '19' can be seen inside the star on the title card.
Cosi Fan Tutte was published in 1994 and is based on Mozart's opera. The pips (heart-shaped locket, magnet, marriage contract and poison bottle) are key objects in the development of the operatic plot.
This early Gerich work is an adaptation of the English pattern with continental stylisation. The double-ended designs are slightly different at each end and divided by a gold band. The colour scheme includes red, yellow, green and pale violet.
Karl Gerich was a great admirer of playing cards produced by B. Dondorf and his tenth pack was inspired by Dondorf's “Luxus-Spielkarte Vier-Erdteile” (Four Continents Luxury Playing Cards) designed by Friedrich Karl Hausmann, 1870.