The Tarot de Marseille, reconstructed by Philippe Camoin and Alexandre Jodorowsky, was completely redrawn by hand, stroke by stroke, by Philippe Camoin, on the computer with the aid of a light pen.
This was not just the restoration of an old deck which had existed, but the rebuilding or "restoration" of a symbolic system which we call Tarot.
For us, the "restoration", "reconstruction" or "reconstitution" of the Tarot is therefore the reconstitution of a structure which we believe must have existed before. Our method is a matter of professional secret.
The Tarot is a kind of metaphysical device composed of symbols, and it is this device that we attempted to reconstruct. In order to do this, we utilized symbols belonging to different early decks which were not all Marseilles Tarots. We also added some symbols which were not found in early decks, but which it seemed to us must have been there before. This is also a matter of professional secret.
In this sense, our reconstruction of the Tarot de Marseille is unique and constitutes an original and composite work which falls under copyright.
"Compared with its modern rivals – I do not include the pure reproductions - the ’Camoin Tarot de Marseille’ presents a certain number of characteristic details and a choice of colors which gives it originality, even if these are only visible to the experienced eye. Completely in line with the demands of tradition, the ’Camoin Tarot de Marseille’ adds a few small more or less interpreted details, borrowed here and there from several early tarots."
"Among other things, that which creates the originality and the uniqueness of the Camoin Tarot is that it has borrowed details from type I Tarots of Marseilles (e.g., the Noblet and the Payen, hence the face on the stomach of the Devil), from the type II Tarot de Marseille (Tourcaty Bernardin, Conver, Bourlion) and even from the ’Tarot de Besançon’, which is quite heretical but original."
The faces of the figures are equally original works. The colours are equally unique. The distribution of shades of colours such as appear in the Camoin-Jodorowsky deck are not found in any early deck. This is also a professional secret.
"The regards of the figures are handled in an expressive - and very special - manner; this is the great difference from the other Tarots said to be of Marseilles, in which the eyes of the figures are generally inexpressive. Finally, and this is perhaps the first thing one sees: the palette of colours, without being unique, is very recognizable. These are the details which make the ’Camoin Tarot de Marseille’ an original deck."