Il Meneghello is an independent publishing house in Milan founded in the 70's by artist and master card-maker Osvaldo Menegazzi. Anyone following my Instagram account will know that I am a big fan of Osvaldo and his work.
I had the good fortune to meet Osvaldo Menegazzi and Christina Dorsini in their atelier in Milan earlier this month. Meeting them was a dream come true. I had an incredible time.
Their store is like Tarot Disneyland; it has a magical quality and is totally spellbinding. Suddenly, I was five years old again, and Osvaldo was the wizard who had an enchanted studio full of cards, paints and brushes. With these tools, he creates the unique decks and boxes we know and love.
During my visit, I learned about his craft, and in particular the art of handmade boxes. These are produced out of archival cardboard! Then the boxes are glued and layered with painted paper, and a tarot card or image is mounted on the front of the box. Once the work is complete, the final touch is his wax seal.
The process is very intuitive and intricate. Like Leonardo DaVinci, Osvaldo is ambidextrous, which I think adds to his charm. Watching him work is like looking at a magician, adding a little bit of this, and a splash of that, and voila! I can't speak highly enough of him, and his creations are simply exquisite works of art.
Here are a few examples of different types of boxes in my collection from the maestro:
The high priestess from the Tarocco Marsiglia, (Switzerland, 1804) was the first I ever received from the maestro.
It is constructed with a mixed collage of printed paper, also called decoupage. The High Priestess is placed in painted red card that acts as a frame and is varnished with lacquer. On the inside it has the Wheel of Fortune from the Minchiate Tarot that is wax sealed with a heart.
The Lovers from the Visconti di Modrone (1442).
This is a large and rather intricate slipcase box. It is glued with antiqued three toned coloured painted paper and has a total of five lacquered Modrone cards. Two on each side, top and bottom and the central card in front placed on a painted card.
The Masonic Tarot- a freestyle interpretation of Masonic symbology (2011).
This box is a drawer-style box with a door knob; this is the maestro's most versatile box from a practical point of view. You can keep anything inside it!
This particular design has wood slabs framing the card, a stunning piece of 3D art.
La Corte Dei Tarocchi (1999).
The latest design from the maestro. A simple yet beautiful case with a pop-up lid. Covered with his signature style paper and with Anna Maria D’Onofrio's owl framed on its front.
For more designs and information on Il Meneghello or the maestro, you can contact Cristina here!