Redesigning the Classic Chess Set: Exhibition in Los Angeles
For “In Turn,” Maxi Spina used modeling software to extrude the classic silhouette of the Staunton piece, transforming the game board into a field of unrecognizable forms that look like alien crustaceans or musical instruments, while Andrew Kovac's "Castle" scales up a single piece, reimagining the rook as something from a monstrous wonderland, a complete world unto itself.
The concepts range from the poetic to the playful, from industrial to abstract, but they all have distinctly architectural qualities, whether its the creation of new space, a focus on material and proportion, or the model-like craft of each set. While none of them are likely to replace the Staunton anytime soon, these sets show how modern design, with all its irony, formal innovation, and technological sophistication, can still be connected to the traditions of the past while proposing bold new visions for the future.
The exhibition CHESS runs until April 19 at Jai & Jai in Los Angeles.