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In the 1930s Polish-Jewish artist Arthur Szyk joined a storied artistic tradition by illustrating an exquisite set of playing cards.
Painted in his highest style in watercolor and gouache on paper, the twelve court cards—four Kings, four Queens, and four Jacks—each feature a different Jewish hero from the Bible or ancient history. Every idealized portrait includes the hero’s name in Hebrew calligraphy and a symbolic element alluding to his or her story.
The Companion Volume discusses these legendary, biblical heroes one by one, placing them in the context of history as well as the context of Szyk’s long career. One of his finest contributions to the applied arts, Szyk’s design showcases not only the rich aesthetic potential of playing cards but also the artist’s commitment to celebrating the history and virtues of his people in his art.
8" x 6-1/2"
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