Two of Swords is a collaboration project of Siân Alice Carter and Olga Sinodova, two young illustrators from the UK, brought together by Tumblr. We have both wanted to do something that involves extensive communication and bouncing ideas off someone else, and, when we found each other, we knew that we were offered a perfect opportunity.
So why make a Tarot deck? We are both sceptics, both care very little about the esoteric, so what’s in it for us? The answer is both simpler and more complex that it may seem. We are artists, commercial artists specifically. We operate in signs and archetypes, and craft imagery out of them that the viewer interprets further by applying their own personal system of symbols to what they see. Naturally, we couldn’t resist the temptation of messing with an existing set of symbols. And what a set! It was originally a card game, until people decided to read fortune using them; and it’s interesting that all the cards have really vague meanings and card readers interpret them completely differently. We are fascinated by the idea that each card is a recognisable symbol and yet they don’t have set meanings unlike all other symbols we usually encounter, like road signs and letters of the alphabet, and even normal playing cards all have set meanings.
With the Tarot, you can put any meaning behind the card. We all know them, and yet these symbols have no fixed meaning of their own, and we’re free to interpret them as we wish.
Tarot opens a window into the world of mythology, the feeling of mysterious and unexplained, and the way some things in the mythological narrative are just something you have to accept make mythology and art closely intertwined. It’s on the cusp of those two that we are looking to craft a Tarot deck of our own.