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Heroes of Ancient Israel Playing Card Gift Set (Queen Esther edition)
PLAYING CARDS. Gift set of two decks featuring the never-before-published playing card art of Arthur Szyk, illustrated softcover Companion Volume and fine art print.
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 illustrated playing cards feature King Saul, King David, King Solomon, King Hezekiah, Deborah the Judge, Queen Esther, Judith, Ruth the Moabitess, Judah Maccabee, Simon bar Giora, Bar Kochba, and John of Giscala. 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. The fine art print of Queen Esther (measuring 8” x 6”) is suitable for framing.
The playing card gift set, which makes a gorgeous gift for any occasion, is especially meaningful for a young woman celebrating her bat mitzvah.
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.
SZYK, Arthur. Heroes of Ancient Israel Playing Card Gift Set. Burlingame, CA: Historicana, 2011.
Heroes of Ancient Israel: The Playing Cards of Arthur Szyk [Collector’s Deck], gilt-edged playing cards with full-length courts on cream background, with matching tuck box;
Heroes of Ancient Israel: The Playing Cards of Arthur Szyk [Player’s Deck], playing cards with double-ended courts on white background, with matching tuck box;
Heroes of Ancient Israel: The Playing Card Art of Arthur Szyk by Allison Claire Chang [Companion Volume], a softcover book; and
Fine art print (8” x 6” digital print on Hahnemühle 100% cotton Photo Rag paper) of Queen Esther, suitable for framing.
Shipping is via USPS Priority Mail, with delivery confirmation ($11).