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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.

About Catherine Kelly

Catherine Kelly, M.A. Paint and Print, B.A. History of Art and Fine Art Painting, is an artist working in Dublin

Catherine Kelly

Catherine Kelly on the cards…

Catherine Kelly, M.A. Paint and Print, B.A. History of Art and Fine Art Painting, is an artist working in Dublin. She first exhibited prints of card players in 1996. Playing cards have continued to be a central feature of her work.

In 1999 she designed a limited edition pack of playing cards in conjunction with a body of work that dealt with role playing, how we see ourselves, and relationships. She also built a house of cards which she named "Safe as Houses" which is featured elsewhere on this website.

Bronze by Catherine Kelly (1997)
Queen of Spades by Catherine Kelly, Dublin

Catherine works in ink, paint, photography, wax, bronze and video. She has a number of playing card-related projects ongoing, several of which are being displayed in exhibitions and galleries.

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By Simon Wintle

Member since February 01, 1996

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Curator and editor of the World of Playing Cards since 1996.

Recommended

Gilbert & Sullivan Cards

Gilbert & Sullivan Cards

“Gilbert & Sullivan” hand-made Savoy Operas pack designed and created by Rex Pitts.

Alison McDonald

Alison McDonald

Artwork for The Watersprite Tarot© designed and painted by Alison McDonald.

David James Binns

David James Binns

Hand-made “Tudor Playing Cards” by David James Binns, age 12.

Production Methods for Small Scale Editions

Production Methods for Small Scale Editions

Some alternative approaches to producing small, hand-made editions of playing cards

Cats, Cakes, Clothes and Cups

Cats, Cakes, Clothes and Cups

Dianne Longley is a print artist who produces books and folios as well as intaglio and relief prints.

About Witta Jensen

About Witta Jensen

WITTA JENSEN… on the cards.

About Karl Gerich

About Karl Gerich

About Karl Gerich.

John Newman’s Colour Cards

John Newman’s Colour Cards

John Newman’s Colour Cards

Teddy Bear playing cards & artwork

Teddy Bear playing cards & artwork

Teddy Bear playing cards & artwork, 1996.

About Peter Wood

About Peter Wood

PETER WOOD is a UK based artist.

Hidden Mickeys

Hidden Mickeys

“HiddenMickeys” by Peter Wood

The Enchanted Journey

The Enchanted Journey

Cards from the delightful Enchanted Journey playing-cards by Karen Curran of Australia.

About Georgina Harvey

About Georgina Harvey

Georgina Harvey worked together with Karl Gerich.

About Emily Arkin

About Emily Arkin

About Emily Arkin

Gallery of Playing Card Designers & Artists

Gallery of Playing Card Designers & Artists

Gallery of Playing Card Artists and Designers

About Shelley Fowles

About Shelley Fowles

Shelley Fowles was born in South Africa but has lived in the United Kingdom since 1979. She trained in Art in Brighton and London.

About Catherine Kelly

About Catherine Kelly

Catherine Kelly, M.A. Paint and Print, B.A. History of Art and Fine Art Painting, is an artist working in Dublin

About Heraclio Díaz

About Heraclio Díaz

Heraclio Díaz lives in the Canary Islands (Spain).

Self-Nurturing Solitaire

Self-Nurturing Solitaire

Self-Nurturing Solitaire by Idelle Jones,

Safe as Houses by Catherine Kelly

Safe as Houses by Catherine Kelly

My current work evolved from using a pack of cards as a metaphor to explore the randomness of life and the luck of the draw.

Welcome to ‘On The Cards’

Welcome to ‘On The Cards’

Welcome to ‘On The Cards’

Grace Cards

Grace Cards

My creativity proved useful in the Primary School classroom and children's clubs I run at Brooke Baptist Church in Norfolk...