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Shrine of the Black Medusa

Using the past to peep Black futures

Casey Rocheteau was born on Cape Cod, and raised as a sea witch. They are an author, visual/sound artist and historian. Their work explores the intersections of race, gender, class, sexuality, trauma, and mental health. Rocheteau often works with primary documentation and collage in what they call a hauntological practice. This fixation upon specters of the past haunting the present//living impact upon the future informs their work across genres.

As founding member of the Can’t Take These Niggas Nowhere Collective (CTTNN Club), Rocheteau often works with this multidisciplinary black artist collective on projects that create multimedia works of art that evoke some aspect of Black history. They are the managing editor of Heart Online Journal and their second poetry collection, The Dozen, was released on Sibling Rivalry Press in 2016. From these projects and practices, the Shrine of the Black Medusa began to emerge as an umbrella concept that encompassed all the work Rocheteau was doing individually and collaboratively.

When Rocheteau created the Shrine of the Black Medusa tarot deck in 2014, it was a personal artistic collage project that wasn't intended for public consumption. After much encouragement from other artists, and a crowdfunding process, backers brought the Black Medusa Tarot on to the public stage in late 2016. Within six months of the first decks being printed, the SBM tarot was included in the Four Women exhibit at Cranbrook as well as Glenn Ligon's Blue/Black exhibit at the Pulitzer Arts Foundation in St. Louis, MO. Given the rapid visibility of the tarot deck, Rocheteau sought to broaden the scope of the SBM's work and crafted a series of workshops for Black and POC communities to create their own tarot decks and other spiritual objects, such as saint candles.