The following images make up a 33 card tarot deck that I made while travelling in cuba for two months...I spent a month living with a local family in the colonial seaside paradise of Baracoa...although it wasn't supposed to, it rained nearly a week straight, preventing me from my daily pilgrimage to the salty Boca de Meil (the mouth of the River of Honey)...I made these cards during that week in effort to keep myself from drowning...

the background sources are botany postcards given to me by my host Emilo Rameriz...they are from the late 50s...all the images you see were obtained from a secondhand book store in Baracoa or from locals (many of whom were children) who stopped by the casa with old magazines and tourist brochures to donate to my sanity...the color is a combination of watercolors, wax, glitter...
i also incorporated found debris whenever possible...

the deck is interactive and is used primarily as a storytelling vehicle, with the psychic element focused on exploring why that particular story card was chosen...I've done two public "performance" style readings: one at the Mission Cultural Center in SF and the other at CITYARTS in Point Arena in conjunction with a Cuba arts show.
I'm always available for readings.




(in honor of cuba's rolling blackouts)





baracoa---magestad inocencia/innocent majesty

(cuba's first city and the sleepy seaside paradise where these cards were made)





campo---amor filial/brotherly love

(no US pesticides: the gray area in the periodo especial---which means cheap organic produce...tons of it
oh to dine on organic produce for a dollar a week)





che---declaracion de amor/declarations of love

(the martyr, the saint, the victim, revolutions beyond even cuba)






(the eyes are watching everywhere)





corazon---lazos de amor/knots of love

(the simple and kind heart of cuba)






cuba---solo vos ocupais me pensamiento/alone you occupy my thoughts

(cuba, the country exposed to mere secondhand America for 40 years)







($1 US = $20 MN, besides being appalled by my waste of a perfectly good weeks worth of food,
my cubano friends said i could get arrested trying to get out of the country with this card! looks like i made it)





periodo especial---the mystery card/what will you find

(euphemism for limited supply...not enough soap, oil and bread to go around)





extranjero---emocion de amor/feelings of love

(the foreigner opportunity to breathe free of the FLAG)






(dedicated to the Baracoans who gave me shelter and love)





fidel---yo os amo/i master you

(the ever present flame and inflamous)






(ripe, fresh, cheap, growing everywhere)






futuro---simpatia/friendly feeling

(a bit of a prayer...who will survive, the socialists, the capitalists, or the thespians?)





hatuey---lo pensare/i think

(Cuba's first rebel)






havana---vuestros ojos abrasan/your eyes burn

(salsa fuego: passion, rhythm, cars, sex, ojos, & cops)






hombre---me amas/me love?

(today's man, firm as a pillar of poetry)







(black ship governments)







(paradise birds for plucking---females jockeying for exit visas)






26 julio---lirio de los valles/lillies of the valley

(the carnavalian resistance continues)





Maceo---noticias placenteras/placement news

(today mounted on the shoulders of the past)





marti---amor vivo y puro/love alive and pure

(a country for a poet, a voice for a country)







(shop with locals till you're exhasted from combing the empty shelves for soap, spices, nuts,
crackers, shampoo, makeup, oil or hit the dollar stores and pay embargo prices with the tourist and jinetaros)






maimi---encantos enganosos/chant of defeat

(pretty self explanitory thanks to Elian & family)






mujer---primera juventud/rewards of youth

(the woman who keeps her homeland together---tirelessly, consciously, with passion)






musica---vuestras cualidades/our qualitites

(the trova scene rocks!)







(a city within the city for and of the dead)







(the primetime obsession---and you thought survivor was popular)







(stay with a family, make them some cash, learn something a hotel can't teach )






prision---fidelidad en la desgracia/fidelity in desgrace

(a place for jinetaros, mostly black, who break into the tourist industry without papers)






ron---obstaculos vencidos/obstacles of defeat

(the national libation, liberation, limitation)







(chengo, yemaya and oshun of ojos azul)







(good luck getting anywhere direct...trains, buggies, horses, wawas, trains, cadillacs, bicitaxis)







turistica---falsas riquezas/false wealth

(stay away from guidebooks, chances are the place is in there for a reason, but the reason has long moved on)






tarjeta back


(the end)


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