7 de agosto de 2020

TAROT • THE LIBRARY OF ESOTERICA • A REVIEW



TASCHENthe biggest artbook editor of the world, only shoots to hit the bullseye. With THE LIBRARY OF ESOTERICA it tends to be hard to resist to the thematic works related to the subjects hold dearto our hearts. And that which we really love is exactly the first release of the label: “TAROT”, written by Jessica Hundley, with essays by Penny Slinger, Marcella Kroll and Johannes Fiebigfull of quotes by thinkers, deck creators and millions of images.


 


The book, with 520 pages in color and hardback, is divided in four sections. The first, an introduction to the oracle, from short entries about its history finishing with a timeline centered around the intellectual production of the northern hemisphere on the subject matter. The second follows the symbology of the 78 Arcana with hundreds of paintings and illustrations of the cards, popular or not to the general public, thus proving the plurality of interpretations of each card. The third part of the book covers the artists, writers and esoterics from 1700’s Gébelin and Etteilla, to Dalí, Calvino, Andy Warhol, up to 2020 with Jodorowsky and Patti Smith. The fourth and last section, as it could none the less be, lays the cards on the table: the Tarot as a tool, the visual language and the creation of meaning in the sacred craft of reading the Arcana.


 


But bear in mind that this is still an art book, not a handbook. It maps the Tarot in the main and the more unexpected museums and libraries of the planet, resulting in a species of encyclopedia of colors, shapes and philosophies anchored in the classical structure of the philosophical deck. Not a definitive book – the only perfect book about Tarot is the Tarot itself  but a much needed compendium. The book presents the movie of 600 years of life of the Tarot to validate it, without doubt or fear, as a tradition. Temple of universal artistic expression. A spiritual heritage of humankind. Living machinery of symbolical language.

 

Tarot, present. And with a brilliant future, by the way.




Review: Leo Chioda • @cafetarot

Translation: Edoardo Valmobida


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