Per un punto Martin perse la capa:
History of italian regional playing cards
and visual variables experimentation
This research started after a card game with friends.
The title of the book is a famous italian common saying, also written on the Ace of Cups
belonging to the Trevisane deck of italian cards, one of the sixteen regional patterns
still existing in Italy today. The literal meaning of the motto is something like:
Martin lost his cape because of a period. Martin in fact was an Italian monk, an abbey leader who lost his position when writing a Welcome board he wanted to hang on the abbey gate. The monk made a mistake, he put a period in the uncorrect point of his sentence reversing its meaning and then losing his job. So, little mistakes can involve really difficult consequences. I chose this motto as a title referring to a card game
situation where some of the participants were in difficulty in recognizing cards with a different suit system.
The book is divided in two main parts: an historical one, in which cards' origins are briefly summarized and some images of old cards are shown in order to enable a comparison with current italian regional cards, and an experimental one. In the experimental part I tried to to test if some cards were more esasily recognizable than others, depending on suit position or pattern (spanish suits vs italian suits). I made a couple of tests consisting in two sequences of selected cards to identify. People had to identify the type of suit or
the numerical value of cards. I subsequently compared speed levels of recognition and checked results.
What came to light was that:
– suit position did not influence the speed of recognition;
– italian pattern numerical cards really put in trouble participants who didn't know that pattern. They had a slight slowdown when identifying them;
Two illustrated parts appear in the book: a section with historical italian cards (centuries XVI to XX), and another section showing currently used italian regional cards, followed
by a list of features used to set up the two experiments.
Strange scanned cards open each chapter of the book, ironically representing cards evolution and test experiences' uncertain variable answers.
200 x 276 mm
MA Communication and publishing