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Myth & Folklore

Moon Shadows - an artbook by Zdenko Basic

Let witches and warlocks, werewolves and murks, devils and nigglers, embers and mares, darkwalkers and boggarts guide you across its mystical pages.

Those who dare not go further, flee at once!

But those who wish to tread further will remember these tales long into the night!


"MOON SHADOWS" is a unique art book best described as a magical treasure trove of folk tales and beliefs of the Northwestern Medvednica mountain and the Samobor region in Croatia, molded and retold as a family heirloom. These tales have been passed down through generations, and the author Zdenko Bašić has been penning them down since his early boyhood.

The first collection of stories he recounted in this fashion was The Tales of the Wind, a book that tells the tales about the faeries and the woodland creatures. In Moon Shadows, however, the author chronicles the memories of more frightening accounts of witches, sorcerers, devils, and night creatures.

Although these were the folk tales usually told late at night or used to frighten children into rushing sooner to their beds, these are still the traditions that people believed in and abided by, as witnessed by the author in his childhood.

They reflect the cruel and frightening aspect of folk beliefs and healing practices, but also a humorous attitude towards life and the relativity of the black-and-white notion of the world. These tales sometimes offered solace to older souls when they faced inexplicable events, and at other times filled them with fear by reminding them of the inexorable transience within the circle of life.

"Moon Shadows" was made using a digital collage technique. Just as a painter uses his brush and colours, so Zdenko Bašić builds the world of Moon Shadows by meticulously crafting objects, making props, sewing the costumes, painting the models, and setting the stage for the finished scenes that are photographed. In a tiny abandoned village at the end of a forgotten road, in the remotest corner of Croatia, Zdenko found a location where he could build the complete set of a witches’ village and where the actors and collaborators helped create the composites for this wondrous book. 

These photographs then become the foundations whereupon he composes his final digital collages, combined with drawings, acrylic, and watercolour paintings and merged into a book where all these techniques alchemically blend together into a ‘whole’ made of sensations and colours, just like ingredients brew together in a witch’s cauldron.

In colour and encased in hardcover, the stories of "Moon Shadows", including four new never-before-published and fully illustrated stories and a map of locations tracing the origins of the tales, spread over 120 pages 

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