krampuslauf philadelphia: parade of spirits… the tarot deck







so this is the thing. i really enjoy tarot decks. i have always collected tarot decks (although i do tend to give them away). for some time i co-edited the tarot special interest group for american MENSA (they really have a special interest group for everything) and i did even work those 900 phone lines doing tarot readings. that was not very much fun.

the best way to learn about tarot is to make decks yourself, and so, over the last … oh my. fifteen years? i have done that a few times. i made a personal deck, for personal use. my sister and i made an online-only deck that has certainly always been in copyright violation, but contained nothing but eighties popstars, and was highly amusing (we got a petition once, to publish it!) and, with my sister, i created an entire tarot deck and book based entirely on knitting, and with my husband, handprinted it all — deck, books — on our iron handpress. (scroll down a tad to see bits of that.)

and so i do not even know what got us talking about tarot in relation to krampuslauf philadelphia, but at some point shortly after lauf last year, we did start talking about it, and realized, that as much as we love (and will continue to print) our yearbooks — (yes, 2013’s is way late, but maybe it will be more exciting to have it at the beginning of the season rather than at the end), we thought, NEXT year — 2015 — we will be doing our FIFTH lauf. and we wanted some new way to memorialize it.

and that is when we got this idea for using a variety of images from ALL of the years of krampuslauf philadelphia to date, as parts of collages, in the form of a tarot deck.

and we got really excited.

there was lots of little businessy stuff  we had to figure out right away, and get samples from companies that produced card decks, and work out ratios, and all that information is available to anyone who is serious and wants to participate in making a card or two. there are only 78 cards in a tarot deck. my guess is, we will have more than enough artists and interest to produce an amazing collaborative collage deck, totally original, with it’s own suits — not just standard cups and pentacles and stuff — and yes, we’d like children to participate as well. nothing is better than kid art. but ANYONE who collaborates on or creates a card will enjoy the responsibility of thinking about its meaning, how it relates specifically to our event, and how to communicate that visually.

there are those to whom this will sound like great fun. we invite them to participate. there are those to whom this will just feel like extra busywork and not particularly necessary or interesting. they have no obligation to be interested. just come to lauf!

now keep in mind, none of this needs to be dealt with with any expediency DURING krampuslauf season, when people are obviously busy thinking costumes and whatnot. but we have been playing around at home, and have come up with a template and a few exemplars — “we” being me, tucker, claudia and arun. (because even though arun is the father of the portland OR lauf, where would we be without him?)

so there is no rush, but there is, for those who are seriously interested, some pertinent information and formatting to be respected, so that things are not just a ridiculous mishmosh. there is a facebook group where we have been chiseling out the particulars.

the deck will be accompanied by a booklet that gives original text interpretations of each card as well as attributions for each part of the collage image itself. that will be a lot of work. even for the three cards we did, i haven’t done all of that yet. it will be for sale around krampuslauf season 2015, and it is likely it will be funded by a kickstarter or other similar type of campaign. we shall see. right now all we want is for it to be beautiful and meaningful and fun.

if you are interested in being part of the project, join the facebook group above. there will be a lot of questions yet to ask, and a lot of collaborating. we have been excited about this for some time, and no idea is off the table, so please get in touch with us with your inspiration or question. we are on the move!