Images Blue Monday Press
With the rise of magic and mysticism in pop culture – particularly in the spooky month of October – it’ll be more than fit to combine that spirit with the latest in music. Though rap stars aren’t the first you’d link magic to, the uncanny mixture made sense when put atop the vividly designed tarot cards by British artist Ben Gore, who recently released the second edition of his hip hop tarot cards that are available for purchase on his website Blue Monday Press – a place where you can find curated items that are heavily inspired by pop culture like these Grimemon cards, and The Grime Activity Book for the grime lovers out there.
The website isn’t filled with everyday items you can use, but is a perfect place to scout for collector’s items that are niche and fun. For instance, tarot card reading isn’t something you can just easily pick up. There are tricks of the trade that you need to be accustomed to beforehand, which was the backstory behind the creation of these cards. In an attempt to understand the symbols and what lies behind them, Gore made the hip hop tarot cards in reaction to what he’s learned.
“I wanted the Hip Hop Tarot to be a sort-of starters entrance to the meaning of the Tarot, which would simplify and explain the meaning of each card, and I spent a lot of time stringently picking rappers that I thought really matched the personality of each card. Also I love rap music and drawing rappers so it was something that I really enjoyed making,” said Gore in response to his pieces.
If isn’t obvious enough, Gore is a music lover himself, but he isn’t one to limit his creativity to just one theme or direction. Just like how a student would recreate notes during a lecture by putting their own spin on things that are foreign to the mind, Gore’s idea of incorporating the rappers into the design is a way for him to dig deeper into the world of fortune telling, though he has yet to get his fate checked by a professional tarot reader.
“It’s a very complicated medium. Fortune telling really intrigues me, not necessarily in that I believe in certain people having powers, but more so in a sense that you see what you want to see or hear what you want to hear. In its best way, it can reveal what you want your future to hold.”
So do we lay our fates completely in the hands of fortune readers? Not really. But heck, it’s a personal choice and it’s always interesting to see what artists can do to combine the world of others into their own artistic realm. In Southeast Asia, mysticism surrounding folklore has always been a thing, so to see it being casually reinforced into modern interpretation is a great way to reintroduce the culture to the masses.
Gore uses Blue Monday Press as his way of showcasing his art to the world while also monetising it. However, his work isn’t all that’s to see and own, he’s also open to help emerging artists grow and regularly hosts exhibitions around the UK to help artists display their work on walls and in tangible forms. There’s even guide you can follow, made him Ben Gore himself.
Treat yourself or a loved one to an art gift or two here.