Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Dali’s Chess Fingers Fetch 23 Grand

Board sold separately

How weird is this?

Dali’s Finger Chess Set Leads Sales At Palm Beaches Auction
Feb 19th, 2008

A chess set designed by Salvador Dali reproducing his own fingers achieved $23,400 at Auction Gallery of the Palm Beaches January 7.

A closeup look at the details of the digits of Dali could be found in the figures of a chess set he designed at the request of his friend Marcel Duchamp in 1964 for the American Chess Federation.

All of the pieces of the set were modeled after Dali's fingers except the two queens, which used one of Dali's wife's fingers crowned with a tooth, and the rooks that were modeled after the saltcellars of the Hotel Saint Regis in New York. Of the 32 pieces, 16 are sterling silver and 16 are silver gilt. The set
was cast by F.J. Cooper of Philadelphia and was signed and numbered “AE 45.” . . .

More here. Give me a bunch of solid-plastic Staunton pieces any day.

What was the American Chess Federation? Was it a real thing, or did they just get the USCF name wrong?