I heard about the Haindl Tarot not too long ago through the grapevine of tarot readers I know. Yet this deck was first published back in 1990. Hermann Haindl (1927-2013) is a German artist known for his surreal art and incorporation of mythology.
Rachel Pollack has penned companion books for this deck that come highly, highly recommended by pretty much every tarot practitioner I know. I haven’t dived into them yet, but will. At this stage, I’m interested in connecting with the deck directly to see what I can glean, and then I’ll be consulting Pollack’s books on the Haindl.
The Haindl Tarot is a truly remarkable deck for any tarot enthusiast to work with.
For the Majors, each card corresponds with a letter in the Hebrew alphabet per Qabalistic tradition, from The Fool as Aleph, Key 1: The Magician as Beth, Key 2: The High Priestess as Gimel, and so on. Each card also corresponds with an Anglo-Saxon rune. At this point in my personal tarot practice, I don’t work much with Hebrew alphabet or rune correspondences in tarot, but the astrological correspondences on the bottom right corners of the cards excite me.
The paintings are surreal with subdued, subtle coloring. I’ve filtered these photographs to add greater contrast for clarity purposes, but in hindsight I wish I hadn’t. Now you can’t see the light, ethereal quality of the original coloring. In person, the art is not quite as bold as they seem to appear in these photos. The art seems to mirror the stream of consciousness of our minds, which results in an incredibly powerful and evocative tarot deck to work with.