NOTE: Skip to the bottom of this post for answers to basic questions about the show--where to see it, how long it will be at each venue, how to bring it to your town, and more. To start at the beginning of this series of posts, go HERE.
This is the sixth the series on the Tarot Rug Project.
Here is the classic RWS image of The Empress:
And here is Loretta Scena’s tarot rug interpretation of the card The Empress:
“You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.”
Loretta Scena is half of the duo of creators and organizers of the Tarot Rug Project. As I recall, she and Michele Micarelli, her co-creator/organizer, came up with the idea for a tarot rug series in 2009 on their way back from a rug hooking camp. Loretta is a well-known and highly respected rug hooker/fiber artist, designer, teacher, and bead artist, and lives on Long Island (New York, USA) with her husband Ed and daughter Caitlin. Ed and Cait both spent many hours supporting her vision to make the exhibit happen; it was definitely a family affair. Loretta's website can be found HERE and includes many of her gorgeous rugs; more rugs can be seen on her blog.
I met all three at the exhibit opening for the first time and just fell in love with them all.
Nearly all the symbols from the original Rider-Waite-Smith card are on Loretta’s tarot rug. The Empress tarot card falls right after the High Priestess in number (High Priestess is #2, the Empress is #3), and here we see that the pomegranate veil behind the High Priestess has been brought into focus as one single pomegranate. This particular fruit is the ultimate symbol of fertility, and is central to Loretta’s interpretation of the Empress. Here, the Empress herself is the infant, about to be born from within a pomegranate womb, and cushioned by the lush seeds/eggs of creativity.
And that is what the Empress is all about--endless nurturing, endless creativity. The lushness of the original Rider-Waite-Smith image is all there within that womb, along with the rich and peaceful color of the background. Various symbols of the original card can be found around the rug--the stars from her crown, the wheat, the waterfall, the scepter (with its Venus symbol, to which the Empress is so connected), even the pearls at her throat become the tiny pearl bracelet on the infant Empress.
Loretta says, “The baby is the Empress in her infant state, ever growing and reproducing.” The Empress has a very strong connection with nature and with the natural world.
WHAT DOES THE CARD MEAN?
In a short post I can only offer surface meanings of these deeply-layered symbols. But The Empress is all about love, nurturing, and fertility (creativity in the physical, and also creativity of ideas). In the original card she is pregnant, and that pregnancy symbolizes all the fruitfulness and possibilities of our world.
“At the touch of love, everyone becomes a poet.”
When you get this card, ask yourself:
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT THE SHOW:
HOW DO I GET A CATALOG?
IF I WANT TO BRING THE SHOW TO MY TOWN, WHAT SHOULD I DO?
WHERE WILL THE SHOW GO NEXT?
I'm a textile artist (traditional rug hooking, punch needle rug hooking, and other textile arts), a long-time meditator, a certified meditation teacher and coach, and focused on learning about the interplay of art, creativity, and mindfulness every day.
SITES TO WATCH:
Insight Meditation Society
Oxford Rug Hooking School
Zentangle: The Official Site
Green Mountain Rug Hooking
Massachusetts Tarot Society