I'd buy Bruins vs Trojans, but who'd play Trojans?
July 9, 2003 8:54 AM   Subscribe

You can never have too many Chess sets. The artists at "Sticks", whose website seems to be barely functioning at all, have put their entire collection of hand carved & painted whimsical chess sets & boards online. This web collection doesn't do the work justice, as the detail on the boards & pieces is fantastic. The themes, however, are what make it great. From Junk Food vs Healthy Food or Farmers vs Livestock, the collection is seemingly endless. To navigate, just keep clicking the right arrow. Warning - the site is not working all that well (at least not for me), so if you click the up arrow you might get stranded. Stay off of the moors, stick to the path!!
posted by jonson (15 comments total)
The entire digital catlog is here, but like I've mentioned, the functionality is spotty. The base URL, "raw style" is an art gallery near me in Santa Monica where I first saw the Sticks work on display.
posted by jonson at 8:56 AM on July 9, 2003

Somewhat interesting but rather impractical.

Give me a nice weighted wooden (or plastic) staunton and I'm happy ... I want to play chess without having to worry about breaking a piece.
posted by devbrain at 9:04 AM on July 9, 2003

yeah, I bet they're not really that good for playing with as much as looking at. reminds me of an old joke: "I bought the Civil War chess set & the Star Trek chess set. Now I have the South fight the Klingons"
posted by jonson at 9:06 AM on July 9, 2003

What devbrainsaid.

Not to mention having to remember whether a particular piece stands for a bishop, or a knight, or a pawn, or...
posted by alumshubby at 9:10 AM on July 9, 2003

Sign me up for a Mefi vs. freerepublic chess set.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 9:27 AM on July 9, 2003

Sign me up for a Mefi vs. freerepublic chess set.

If I even rank at all can I be something other than a pawn?

Jonson, thanks for the link. Cool chess sets are cool. My mom found me a nice old chess table at a thrift shop recently, it must date back to the fifties with its own built-in radio. Perfect for playing a match while catching the ball game.
posted by vito90 at 9:34 AM on July 9, 2003

Sign me up for a Mefi vs. freerepublic chess set.

*sigh* OK, now we have to assign pieces. I'll go first: maamjujujive, queen. No-brainer.

Who's next?
posted by gottabefunky at 9:40 AM on July 9, 2003

Or maybe Mefi vs. LGF?

Great post, jonson. I love chess, and I also love the concept of customized boards. It's so hard to do well, as some of these examples show. It's kind of like the challenge of designing an alphabet. You want to balance the desire to show a lot of different pieces (e.g. junk food) with the ability to tell what's what once they start moving around the board, and there are various ways of handling the problem of should the knights and bishops be the same as each other, or variations on a theme? Not to mention the old how to divvy up the queen and king in situations that aren't headed by a male-female couple.

Anyway, yeah, most of these look pretty dismal for actual playing, but lotsa fun as artworks. Very Red Grooms-esque.
posted by soyjoy at 9:41 AM on July 9, 2003

Wish the site were better laid out - I would have liked to see more of the battle themes. Appreciate your title tag, jonson - right on!

Flanders - I guess the MeFi king would be #1, but who would be queen? Madamjujujive? Wolfdaddy? What would Miguel be? (",)

On preview: crap, gottabefunky beat me to it.
posted by widdershins at 9:45 AM on July 9, 2003

I don't know. I prefer the set Karim Rashid designed for Bozart, personally.
posted by ScottUltra at 9:52 AM on July 9, 2003

Miguel would have to be a bishop. All those sweeping diagonalizations, that avuncular manner...

I don't know if Matt would be a rook or king.

My self, I am slowly moving across the board....
posted by namespan at 10:42 AM on July 9, 2003

I love these. The Karim Rashid set too. (You could put an eye out with that rook!) I want robots, monkeys, pirates, and ninjas for an all-hipster-meme showdown.
posted by furiousthought at 10:44 AM on July 9, 2003

If you're in London then you should check out the art of chess exhibition for chess sets through the ages as well as some pretty groovey sets designed by internationally acclaimed artists (and the Chapman brothers).
posted by ciderwoman at 12:26 PM on July 9, 2003

Matt would have to be king. The rooks would be server boxes.
posted by wanderingmind at 2:08 PM on July 9, 2003

Excellent site, jonson, what fun! I actually loved the entire site - I would love to have this little bauble and I mention it just in case we are doing any kind of secret santa present swap next holiday season. (I know how hard it can be to come up with ideas!)

gottabefunky and widdershins, thanks for your nomination, but I would most definitely defer to WolfDaddy!
posted by madamjujujive at 8:47 PM on July 9, 2003

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