The Da Vinci Enigma Tarot created by Caitlín Matthews is a Da Vinci fan dream! If you love Leonardo Da Vinci’s art style, An art history buff, or are just a fan of the Da Vinci code…Then this is the Tarot deck for you.
Since I am all three, I decided to give these cards a whirl.
I love the fact that the author does not call the cards High or Low Arcana, but instead calls them Macrocosm cards or Microcosm cards…which is humorous to say the least.
The Enigma patterns on the back of the decks are also beautiful. I spent an hour trying to put the cards together not unlike that of a puzzle, which was also amusing.
I find it charming that with the traditional Tarot suits such as Swords, Wands (Rods) , Cups and Coins (Pentacles) with the Da Vinci Enigma Tarot we have replaced the tradition with Air, Fire, Water, Earth… Also some Higher Arcana has been replaced to stay in the Da Vinci vein…The High Priestess is now known as The Enigma, The Lovers are now The Twins, Justice is now replaced with Experience…etc. While I like changing up and reviving decks for a change of pace, some die hard Tarot may not like the breath of fresh air…isn’t that like Da Vinci though? He was always the inventor and spicing up the status quo? So it’s appropriate.
The handbook is 144 pages long and includes some new card layouts: a Vitruvian Man card layout, a Nautilus Divine Proportion Spread that seems very unique and enjoyed trying my hand at that format.
On the art history side of things I was a touch saddened that one of my personal favorite works by Da Vinci was nowhere to be found in this deck. My favorite being the adult version of John the Baptist. Most of the artwork on the deck are images from Da Vinci’s sketchbooks, not his finished paintings. But regardless, the art is well chosen for the particular symbolism and sketch.
In my personal opinion, this is a great deck, but not for a first timer card reader, unless they understand symbolism easily.
This is a deck for an Art Historian, Die Hard Da Vinci fan or a collector of unique decks.
Caitlín Matthews has several books and decks such as the Untold Tarot: The Lost Art of Reading Ancient Tarots and the Complete Lenormand Oracle Handbook.
Caitlín Matthews is a member of the World Divination Association and founder of the Foundation for Inspirational and Oracular Studies.
Caitlín Matthews website is www.hallowquest.org.uk
The Da Vinci Deck The price ranges $34.99 which is a very reasonable price for a nearly 150 page book and a beautiful deck of Da Vinci artwork.
(I paid well over 150 dollars for an antique book of Da Vinci … trust me, this is a steal!)
Published through Red Feather, Mind, Body, Spirit
Distributed through Schiffer publishing Ltd.
If you would like to purchase a copy, you can through your local metaphysical bookstore.
(reviewers note: my sister who does not read cards or any other form of cartomancy/cardomancy – has fallen in absolute love with this deck. She loves Da Vinci’s art and is currently reading Caitlín Matthews book as we speak…I am coming to terms with loss.)
Review by TJ “Pandora” Teer