The World of Playing Cards Logo The World of Playing Cards Logo

Playing cards have been with us since the 14th century, when they first entered popular culture. 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. All over the world, whatever language is spoken, their significance is universal. Their popularity is also due to the imaginative artwork and graphic design which is sometimes overlooked, and the “then & now” of how things have changed.

The Deal Playing-card Project

A deck of cards produced as a creative collaboration and made possible largely through volunteers and sponsorship of various kinds.

The DEAL Playing Card Project

Artwork for this "exhibition in a box" was donated by artists living in Minnesota, USA. The contributions, of various sizes and media, were exhibited at No Name Gallery and then sold at public auction in June 2000.  The deck of cards illustrated below was produced as a creative collaboration between No Name Exhibitions and Red Eye, and made possible largely through volunteers and sponsorship of various kinds.

The deck is really interesting to study - the variety of techniques and media - the styles of expression and design - lots of good ideas - all the works deserve to be seen in a gallery to be fully appreciated. The back features richly grained planks, a type of literal "deck".

Jack of spades by Chris Larson Queen of spades by Melba Price Four of diamonds by Colette Gaiter Eight of diamonds by Robert Perkins
Ace of clubs by Christine Baeumler Six of clubs by David Rathman King of hearts by Stacey Davidson Joker by Mo Donohue

52 cards, 2 jokers plus 2 extra cards in a plastic box, accompanied by a gallery guide containing facts, musings and notes about the artists. Available online from www.soapfactory.org