Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Tuesday January 13, 2009

Filed under: General — m759 @ 1:00 PM

Something Traditional —

“German Chancellor Dr. Angela Merkel is the Charlemagne Prize laureate of 2008…. The prize will be awarded on 1 May, Ascension Day.”

The City of Aachen

Something Modern —

Previously undescribed in this journal:

A chess set
by F. Lanier Graham
of modular design:

Interlocking chess pieces by F. Lanier Graham, 1967


“The traditional chess set, with its naturalistic images of medieval armies, suggests a game between combatants who enjoy the winning of battles. This chess set, with its articulated images of abstract force, suggests a game between contestants who enjoy the process of thinking.
The primary principle of this design… is that the operating reality or function of each piece– both its value and how it moves– is embodied in a simple self-expressive form….

Chess pieces by F. Lanier Graham, 1967

Design Copyright F. Lanier Graham 1967

These pieces are designed to have the look and feel of little packages of power. The hardwoods (walnut and korina) are left unfinished, not only because of tactile values, but also to emphasize the simplicity of the design. The interlocking blocks are packaged to reflect the essential nature of the game– rational recreation, played with basic units whose fields of force continuously interact in subtle, complex patterns.”

— F. Lanier Graham, 1967

For those whose tastes in recreation are less rational, there is also the legendary chess set of Charlemagne described in novels by Katherine Neville. (See ART WARS.)

Related material: this journal on the First of May, 2008, the date of last year’s Charlemagne award.

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