People’s creativity continuously catches me off guard and such is the case with this next spin on everyday playing cards. Inspired by some of the most iconic landmarks across New York City’s five boroughs, Metrodeck Playing Cards are printed on found and repurposed subway fare cards scattered throughout the city. Each deck is made up of 52 English-Style playing cards plus 2 jokers. The face cards include:
KING OF HEARTS – Brooklyn Bridge
QUEEN OF HEARTS – Statue of Liberty
JACK OF HEARTS – Williamsburgh Savings Bank Tower
KING OF DIAMONDS – Empire State Building
QUEEN OF DIAMONDS – Times Square
JACK OF DIAMONDS – Grand Central Terminal
JOKER – Coney Island
Here is what designer Norman Ibarra has to say about the project. Each face card is individually screen printed in four colors of enamel ink. The deck comes packaged in a custom 2-color, die-cut, and letterpressed tuck box printed by Mama’s Sauce Print Shop. This first edition of 40 decks includes a signed and numbered Ace of Spades designed after NYC’s ubiquitous manhole covers.
The deck also offers some insight into the city’s history by showcasing over ten years of advertising. Each deck has a random assortment of ads dating anywhere between 2001 and 2012. Some cards are truly one of a kind. Due to materials and handcrafting, each deck has slight variations from one piece to the next.
Designing, collecting, and printing the cards has been my official after-hours pastime for almost two years. Many thanks go out to the staff at Gowanus Print Lab in Brooklyn for their encouragement and support, as well as to Mama’s Sauce Print Shop for their superb printing skills with the packaging.
Card size 3.375″ x 2.125″
Repurposed subway cards
Box size 3.5” x 2.25” x 0.6875”
French construction pure white 110lb cover
*Please note: Given the nature of the materials, these cards are not intended for play.