Fin de Siècle Kipper

by Ciro Marchetti

Fin de Siècle Kipper Box Cover
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Sample Spread

Fin de Siècle Kipper, Sample Deck card #1 Fin de Siècle Kipper, Sample Deck card #2 Fin de Siècle Kipper, Sample Deck card #3
Fin de Siècle Kipper, Sample Deck card #4 Fin de Siècle Kipper, Sample Deck card #5 Fin de Siècle Kipper, Sample Deck card #6


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Kipper is a different type of cartomancy than Tarot. It originated in Germany as a card game in the 18th century and transformed into the 36 card Oracle deck for divination in the late 19th century. The name Kipper comes from the German fortune teller Susanne Kipper.

While Kipper is similar to the Lenormand system in its origins and number of cards, it’s different in that it offers more character cards. This creates a novelistic feeling with a touch of drama. Kipper is like Lenormand in that it works well for predictive readings, uses limited or fixed meanings per card and speaks in a more direct, blunt way. Cards are usually read in triplets or more.

Tarot Artist, Ciro Marchetti, has taken the original 36 kipper card system and re-imagined it in Victorian Britain in 39 beautifully illustrated cards.

With it's symbolism and imagery heavily focused on people the Kipper is commonly used to provide insights into human relationships. This cartomancy system is relatively unknown in the English speaking world, but in Germany it's been known and loved for generations.

The title, Fin de Siècle literally translated means end of the century, but is commonly understood to refer specifically to the turn of the 19th Century. As such it's a few decades after the period of the Biedermeier in which the original Kipper deck is presumed by many to have been based. The location has been moved from the original Bavarian setting to that of Victorian Britain to help make the system easier to relate to and interpret.

The card guides include insights from not only Ciro Marchetti but 3 experts in Kipper cartomancy; Fortune Buchholtz, Stella Waldvogal and Susanne Zitzi.

Fortune Buchholtz has an academic background in classi- cal languages & poetry. She began studying cards while living in New York in 1998, concentrating on the art and cultural his- tory around all sorts of playing cards. Besides learning about and collecting cards, Fortune has lived and traveled exten- sively in the parts of Europe that are key to the history of cards.
Currently Fortune works with clients in person as well as online using tarot, Lenormand and Kipper. Her outlook com- bines modern insights from language and psychology with a deep poetic sense of the situation. She strongly believes that sitters have their own best answers - cards help them articu- late those answers to themselves.
Outside of cards, Fortune loves Ethiopian coffees, jazz and vintage clothes.

Susanne Zitzi has been working with tarot and cartomancy for over 30 years. An avid collector of both tarot and oracle cards. She is also an renowned author of several books and ar- ticles on the genre. The book "Kartenlegen" ("Cartomancy") is recognized as one of the definitive resources on playing cards in Germany. She is currently finishing a book about Kipper cards in English "Reading the Kipper Cards - a Comprehen- sive Guide", which is planned for release before the end of the year.

Stella Waldvogel

Ciro Marchetti is an award-winning digital artist. His popular decks include Gilded Reverie Lenormand and Oracle of Visions.

About Ciro:
Some years ago I turned my back on my career in corporate graphic design. I sold my company and dedicated my efforts, full time, to personal illustrations. A large portion of my work, during this period, has been the production of decks of tarot and oracle cards. The mystical historical context of this genre sparked my curiosity and subsequently seemed suited to the overall look and theme of other images I was producing. While I make no claim of being a tarot reader, I found it an appealing challenge to create images that tarot readers might connect with. Following the year of their individual release, each of my six decks was voted "most popular deck of the year," by one or more of the leading tarot community groups. 
So I guess I must have got something right.

My general illustrative work is represented by MGL Licensing Graphics, based in London.

More recently, I have been playing around with animated sequences of my images. The addition of movement and music, combine to create a truly powerful extra dimension of story telling.

MacWorld Digital Art Competition winner 2001, 2002, 2003 & 2005.
Five GURU Awards from (NAPP) the National Association of Photoshop Professionals.
Artistic category and Best of Show 2001, 2003 & 2006.
Worldwide Digital Canvas Award 2006 - Artistic category.
Worldwide Photoshop Award 2007 - Artistic category.
Worldwide Photoshop competition 2009 - Grand Prize Winner.

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