Matrix Edition 1 Playing Cards by Luke Wadey


Luke Wadey’s first crowdfunded deck of 2023 is a typographic playing cards with a twist. Matrix Edition 1 is inspired by the work of the infamous Swiss designer Armin Hofmann in 1965, best known for his help to define The International Design Style as we know it, and his iconic poster work, but in this case his fluid matrix, or as some people know it as the ‘rubber bands’ study. 

The concept is fairly simple, it is to explore the relationship between lines and dots, using a grid, or matrix, of 4×4 dots that work together to create fluid shapes. Luke told Kardify,

I decided to explore this for myself. It was in this experiment I wanted to create unique card faces, featuring abstract, artistic values by experimenting with different size circles, different spacing, different amounts of circles. 

Luke was able to find combinations that he could create his own font for the card faces, as well as a dynamic card back, both exploring different combinations of circular grids and the shapes he could create with them. 

All the card faces were designed first, the unique curves holding tension between each shape, linking to each other, a diverse range of angles and depths to establish a set of unusual forms. 

The deck needed a card back that complimented the faces, something understated, that wouldn’t look out of place as a poster on your wall, whilst showing dynamic shapes that create interesting spreads and fans. Luke continued,

For this new collection, I wanted to start it with a colour combination I have been using in my day-job work for ten years, the cool nature of the teal contrasting and complimenting the coral tones. With continual feedback from my patrons, with different designs and colours explored, it was to my joy that we all felt this was the best combination to start the collection with.

The tuck box itself provides contrast to the deck, embracing the coral color and using the card back design as a wrap-around graphic. Luke has included further information in a typographic treatment,  as well as a large negative space ‘1’ to show this is the first deck in the collection.

As mentioned, this is the first deck in the Matrix series. Luke plans to create even more abstract combinations and experiments based on the same principles, the possibilities are limitless.

Printed by USPCC on crushed premium bee stock, traditionally cut with air-cushion finish. Pledge starts at $11 on Kickstarter.


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