Sacred Sites Tarot
Concept by Massimiliano Filadoro
Artwork by Federico Penco
Lo Scarabeo / Llewellyn Publications / 2012
Art Tarot collection edited by Pietro Alligo
ISBN 10: 0738735000
ISBN 13: 978-0738735009
_About My Reviews_
TOP LINE (formerly Bottom Line)
The fact that the cards do not have titles might be unappealing to some, especially those who are just beginning to learn tarot. I would not recommend this deck for beginners who want to learn the "traditional" Tarot card symbols, imagery, and interpretations. However, the deck could certainly be used by someone who prefers to read through intuition alone.
You can watch a video of an interview with Massimiliano Filadoro (concept) and Federico Penco (artwork) at this link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=daykj5eEy9E&feature=plcp
THE PUBLISHER'S PRODUCT SUMMARY
"From Stonehenge to the Egyptian Pyramids to the Taj Mahal, the world is filled with holy structures and ancient places shimmering with mystical energy. Recognized over the centuries for their mysterious connection to the Divine, the power of these revered sites is still felt today. This utterly unique tarot offers a rare opportunity to connect with the age-old wisdom of temples, shrines, and sacred places across five continents."
- Theme: Sacred Sites ranging from "the most remote past to modern times"
- Number of Cards: 78
- Major Arcana: 0 (The Fool / Mount Graham) - 21 (The World / Shambhala)
- Justice is 8; Strength is 11
- Majors are numbered in the upper left and lower right corner, using Roman numerals, but do not bear titles
- Court Cards: Knave, Knight, Queen, King
- Courts have a suit symbol top and center and a title-related symbol bottom center (helmet for Knave, horse for Knight, different types of crowns for Queen and King)
- Suits: Chalices (Places of Water), Pentacles (Places of Earth), Wands (Places of Fire), Swords (Places of Air)
- Pips have a suit symbol top and center and a number bottom center in XXXX style; the Aces bear the number "1" instead of the word "Ace"
- Little White Book (LWB) contains Introduction and 10 pages in English, with translations of those pages into Italian, Spanish, French, and German
APPEARANCE, SIZE, QUALITY
Although the deck is structured traditionally, it is not a Rider-Waite "clone." The imagery is culture-specific, but those familiar with the RWS deck will understand why a few of the sites and characters were chosen for specific cards.
For example, the idea of sacrifice connected with The Hanged Man, works well with the choice of the statue of Christ the Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, for Trump 12. Krakatoa, which erupted violently in 1883, seems an appropriate choice for Trump 16, The Tower. On the Judgement card, a huge angel literally blows down the walls of Jericho with her horn. On Strength, a woman poses next to a sculpture of a lion. The Chariot depicts a man sitting on a wagon at a sanctuary.
On the faces of the Majors an image of the world peeks up from behind the upper right corner and lower left corner of the main image. Card backs are light blue with a slightly darker blue design and an image of the world in the center.
The cards measure 2.7 (w) x 4.9 inches, and are printed on average weight stock.
Federico Penco chose watercolors for the artwork in this deck. He felt this allowed him to show real places with actual details, while conveying the mystical or exotic nature of many of these sites. The cards have a high level of detail, which makes them fascinating to study.