Words Anna Bates
“The history of the last century has often been compared to a chess game, with political systems, ideologies, brands, and artistic movements jousting for world dominance,” explain the New York-based Boym Partners. So, the designers have quite aptly designed a chessboard, allowing people to play out the USA’s turbulent century “from the sinking Titanic to the scarred towers of the World Trade Center”.
Among the pieces are a space shuttle, urinal, Unabomber cabin, Panton chair, sinking Titanic and a 1980s Apple Macintosh computer. To remind players what’s at stake, History Chess is played out on a 4×4 foot chessboard, intimidating its players by dwarfing them – the World Trade Center pieces are the height of the upper body.
There are 32 “sculptures” in total, all hand-carved by Indonesian craftsmen. Once history has been re-calculated, the chessboard can be folded into a box, with the chess pieces packed safely inside until the next game.