Earlier this year, Colin Marshall told you how “Chess has obsessed many of humanity’s finest minds over centuries and centuries and Marcel Duchamp seems to have shown little resistance to its intellectual and aesthetic pull.” His passion for the game (which he describes above) led him to design a now iconic Art Deco chess set, to print an array of chess tournament posters, and to become a pretty adept chess player himself, eventually earning the title of “grand master” as a result. In a pretty neat project, Scott Kildall has looked back at records of Duchamp’s chess matches and created a computer program that lets you play against a “Duchampian ghost.” Just click here, and then click on the chess piece you want to move. It will turn green, and then you can move it with your trackpad/mouse. Enjoy.
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While I love the idea, the implemented chess program is simply under-par. It’s so bug-ridden that you can not play a complete normal game with it. When you play black, the program still requires you to go first! Totally disappointed!
We’re all playing chess against Duchamp’s ghost after he was used as pawn to undermine Western aesthetics for over a century.
Nonsense. He was no pawn. And Western aesthetics was already a corpse by the beginning of the 20th century anyway.
Duchamp helped Beckett figure out the great chess game played and recorded in the latter’s novel Murphy.