The Art of Chess: Artists creating DIFFERENT Chess sets
Daniel Danzer
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"The Art of Chess" is an ongoing project and exhibition started by the RS&A gallery in London a couple of years ago.

A couple of artists, some connected to the gallery, created innovative, thoughtful, provocative sets for CHESS.

The exhibition was shown in several countries of the world.

This list shows some of the artworks. All pictures are uploaded and used with the kind permission by RS&A, namely Julia Royse. Thanks for this!

Unfortunately, she had not the highest resolution images at hand to send to me. But more pictures and works of "Chess Art" by other artists can be seen here:

http://www.r-s-a.co.uk/
Just click on "The Art of Chess" on the left. Guess, who is the first one showing up.

Have fun and, if you like, add more Chess Sets, which are created by modern artists with a special approach.
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1. Board Game: Chess [Average Rating:7.09 Overall Rank:420] [Average Rating:7.09 Unranked]
Daniel Danzer
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RACHEL WHITEREAD
Modern Chess Set
2005
Replicas of artists own dollhouse furniture collection - multi-media.
Board and Box: Chessboard with carpet and linoleum squares, printed wooden games box with instruction manual on paper.
King: 10 cm; Pawn: 1 cm
Box: 24.5 x 75 x 41.5 cm
The two sides creating an opposition between utilities and furnishings. The board compliments this overall aesthetic by being constructed out of carpet and linoleum squares while the box mimics the typography of 1950s modern design.

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2. Board Game: Chess [Average Rating:7.09 Overall Rank:420] [Average Rating:7.09 Unranked]
Daniel Danzer
Germany
Stuttgart
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MAURIZIO CATTELAN
Untitled (Good versus Evil)
2003
Pieces: Hand painted porcelain
King: 16 cm; Pawn 11 cm
Box: 30 x 56 x 56 cm
Cattelan decided to populate his highly figurative chess set with good and bad figures that he both admires and despises. The King on the black side is Adolf Hitler, opposed on the white side by Martin Luther King. Other notable figures appear as Pawns, including Donatella Versace, Rasputin and General Custer (black) and Superman, Mother Teresa and Sitting Bull (white).
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3. Board Game: Chess [Average Rating:7.09 Overall Rank:420] [Average Rating:7.09 Unranked]
Daniel Danzer
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Stuttgart
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OLIVER CLEGG
Nights Move
2008
Wood, leather, resin, paint, felt, glasses, calliper, rulers and magnifying glass.
Chess pieces: Tallest 29 cm, smallest 6cm
Oliver Cleggs chess set consists of an exact replica of Sigmund Freud’s desk and chair made in wood and leather - this is the last desk and chair Freud worked from while he lived in London. Inlaid into the surface of the desk is a wooden chequered board made from squares of light and dark wood. Sitting on the chessboard are 32 chess pieces copied from a relevant selection of Freud’s antiquities. 16 of these pieces are recreated and painted to resemble the original objects and 16 are replicas made in transparent resin constitute.
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4. Board Game: Chess [Average Rating:7.09 Overall Rank:420] [Average Rating:7.09 Unranked]
Daniel Danzer
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[Last image by Kolja Geldmacher (Flashhawk)]

ALASTAIR MACKIE
‘Amorphous Organic’
2008
Bog oak, brass, glass, bulbs, battery, copal, insects
Pieces: Tallest 8.5cm, Smallest 4cm
Board/Table: 73 x 70 x 70cm
Alastair Mackie (born 1977) is fascinated with the intricate details in our natural lives. His chess set is a logical evolution from a work he made in 2007, a set of dice cut from amber. The surface was set with mosquitoes that make up each of the die's digits. Each chess piece encapsulates a single suspended insect, perhaps millions of years old. The ‘white’ pieces are represented by flying insects and the ‘black’ side by ground based insects. So, for example, the ‘white’ knight is represented by an exotic wasp and the ‘black’ king, by a scorpion. The chessboard design takes its reference from a geological sample-viewing table. A light box has been set into the surface of the table to illuminate the insects trapped in the clear amber pieces. Specimen drawers in the side of the table house the pieces out of play.
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5. Board Game: Chess [Average Rating:7.09 Overall Rank:420] [Average Rating:7.09 Unranked]
Daniel Danzer
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PAUL McCARTHY
Kitchen Set
2003
Pieces and board: Found objects and resin casts and wooden flooring
Packaging: Modified kitchen equipment
King: 39 cm; Pawn: 3 cm
Board: 100 x 100 cm
Himself a keen chess player, McCarthy decided to create a Readymade chess set for his RS&A chess commission. Constructed entirely from random objects chosen from the contents of his kitchen, among them a ketchup bottle and rubber duck, the artist has either recast each piece to look identical to the original found object or located identical items to construct the editions. The board has been fabricated from the artists’ kitchen floor by cutting up sixty-four identical squared segments that are then arranged into a chequered chessboard.
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6. Board Game: Chess [Average Rating:7.09 Overall Rank:420] [Average Rating:7.09 Unranked]
Daniel Danzer
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JAKE & DINOS CHAPMAN
Chess Set
2003
Pieces: Hand painted bronze figurines with lead crystal bases and miniature real hair wigs
Board and Box: Ebony and rosewood with inlaid skull and crossbones veneer
Knight: 22 cm; Pawn: 11 cm
Box: 30 x 79 x 79 cm
For the RS&A chess set commission, the Chapman Brothers chose to create a game played by post-apocalyptic adolescents, the one side white with blond-styled haircuts and the other side black with Afro hair. The set is displayed in its own handcrafted wooden games box, the board inlaid with double-headed skull and crossbones.
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7. Board Game: Chess [Average Rating:7.09 Overall Rank:420] [Average Rating:7.09 Unranked]
Daniel Danzer
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PAUL FRYER
Chess Set for Tesla
2008
Wood, glass, electric components

Pieces: Tallest 15 cm, Smallest 10cm
Box: 17 x 48 x 50 cm
Fryer’s chess set is called the Tesla Set in honour of the great and peculiar inventor Nikola Tesla. Some credit Tesla with the invention of the vacuum tube, on which the set is based. Fryer has made extraordinary works that detect atoms in space and sculptures that create lightning. Tesla was also very interested in transmitting power through open space, which is a central goal in the making of art. The board of the chess set powers the vacuum tube pieces so that when unplugged the individual pieces glow for a little while, struggling to keep connection with the board, and then die. Plug them back in and they reactivate.
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8. Board Game Designer: Jim Arnold
jim arnold
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Here's a different looking chess set. 40" wide by 27" across to your opponent. Solid Maple and Walnut, hand carved pieces. King about 7" tall...pawns about 3" tall. Sand gardens, 'live' bonsai...
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