Vanessa Tarot

Vanessa Tarot by Lynyrd Narciso: a card-by-card feature by Tarot Zamm.

Taking their inspiration from pop culture, the sassy but sage characters of Vanessa Tarot playfully reinterpret traditional female roles. With humor, glamour, and an attitude of adventure, the daring darlings of Vanessa Tarot share all their arcane secrets. This charming deck invites readers to join in the joy ride exploring life through the fanciful imagery of tarot. Presented in a keepsake tin, Vanessa Tarot includes 78 cards with 30-page instruction booklet.

“Vanessa Tarot has taken its inspiration from several areas of contemporary pop culture including female role models from the small and large screens of television and cinema, life-like fashion dolls, and heroines from comic books. In the same way that dolls encourage imaginative role-playing, Vanessa Tarot provides scenarios for examining our fantasies, fears, decisions, desires, and choices. The sassy but sage characters of Vanessa Tarot playfully reinterpret female roles, occupations, and social stereotypes from the housewife to the witch, and the princess to the scientist.” — Lynyrd Narciso, Introduction to Vanessa Tarot
Source: US Games Systems

Product Details (Amazon.com)
Cards
Publisher: U.S. Games Systems Inc. (July 1, 2007)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1572815744
ISBN-13: 978-1572815742
Product Dimensions: 3.9 x 2.7 x 1.3 inches

Vanessa Tarot by Lynyrd Narciso: a card-by-card feature by Tarot Zamm.




From an Amazon Hall of Fame Reviewer Janet Boyer: Smart, Sassy and Inventive
on October 16, 2007

“Vanessa Tarot has taken its inspiration from several areas of contemporary pop culture including female role models from the small and large screens of television and cinema, life-like fashion dolls, and heroines from comic books. In the same way that dolls encourage imaginative role playing, Vanessa Tarot provides scenarios for examining our fantasies, fears, decisions, desires and choices.” – From the Little White Book

When I saw a few images from this deck online, my interest was piqued. Once I got the actual Vanessa Tarot in my hands, though, I became enamored–and it far exceeds my expectations.

This spunky deck comes in an adorable purple tin (think Altoids!), and as soon as I opened it, a grin spread across my face. That grin widened as I worked my way through the Vanessa Tarot card-by-card–to the point I was chuckling aloud at several of the images.

Sassy and smart, the Vanessa Tarot shows women of every color in the many roles that women can, and do, play on the stage of life. Here are but a few:

* a resourceful housewife (The Magician),
* a provocative Sunday School teacher (The Hierophant)
* a playful, jump-roping urbanite (2 of Coins)
* an adventurous sky-diver (Knight of Wands)
* an experimenting scientist (2 of Wands)
* an enthralling temptress (The Devil)
* a clear-sighted Judge (Justice)

Knowing that the deck creator, Lynyrd Narciso, had TV on the mind, I associated the blonde witch sitting atop a broom sailing through the starry sky as Samantha from Bewitched (remember the cartoon opening sequence?). And the two women having a ball stomping grapes the old-fashioned way in the 4 of Wands? I couldn’t help but think of Lucy and Ethel in that famous episode from I Love Lucy!

Just because the imagery is cartoonish, don’t dismiss this deck as superficial. There’s some clever portrayals in the Vanessa Tarot that are witty and observant.

One of the laugh-out-cards, for me, is the 5 of Wands which shows five determined bridesmaids clamoring to catch the thrown bouquet (talk about “friendly” competition!) And the guy handcuffed to the bed in The Devil is priceless…

The 29-page LWB is one of the best I’ve seen–and although it only includes one 3-card spread, it *does* provide six blank pages for jotting down notes. The author provides both upright and reversed meanings, and addresses the cards according to number and Court ranking (for example, Twos, Eights, Knights, etc.). The cards measure 3 ¾ x 2 3/8 inches, and I like that they are smaller than most Tarot decks. Fully reversible backings show a purple-striped background with sky-blue stars in the foreground. The striped-themed carries over to the front of the cards as bordering. Suits are Wands, Coins, Cups and Swords and the Courts are Page, Knight, Queen and Queen.

Because the Vanessa Tarot is so delightfully inventive, it was difficult choosing which cards to show with this review! This would make a great deck for beginners, and seasoned readers who enjoy modern decks celebrating “girl power” will no doubt be thrilled with it, as well.

(To see 12 images from this deck, visit the Reviews–Decks section at […])

Janet Boyer, author of The Back in Time Tarot Book: Picture the Past, Experience the Cards, Understand the Present (coming Fall 2008 from Hampton Roads Publishing)

Source: Amazon.com