Cy Endfield 1972 FIDE Commemorative Travel Chess Set
It would be no exaggeration to say that, of all the very many designs chess sets have assumed over the centuries, few have had the modern elegance, functional innovation, and pure luxury appeal of Cy Endfield's travel set presented in 1972. Simplified, boldly Modern forms lock together combining to produce an easily transportable set, as elegant to behold in its packed formulation as in its open, arranged format.
Cyril Raker Endfield majored in Drama at Yale while also studying mathematics, mechanical drawing and silversmithing. He occasionally worked as a professional sleight-of-hand magician and was admitted as a member of the Magic Castle in L.A. and the Magic Circle in London.
Endfield assisted Orson Welles on Mercury Theater projects, then directed film noir classics such as The Underworld Story and The Sound of Fury. Blacklisted by the House Un-American Activities Committee in 1951, Endfield lived and worked in the U.K. for the rest of his life. There he directed such cult-classic films as Zulu, starring Michael Caine.
His early friendship with Man Ray linked him to both chess and Modernist aesthetics. Endfield created this design in 1972. President of the International Chess Federation and former world chess champion Max Euwe chose the Endfield chess design as the Federation‘s sole commemorative chess set for the legendary World Chess Championship Match between American Bobby Fischer and Russian Boris Spassky. This new chess set edition with folding board commemorates the 50th anniversary of the Fischer – Spassky Match. Marcel Duchamp had always emphasized portability and economy of means and Endfield created a set that was so innovative in its elegance, simplicity and practicality that he was granted a patent in 1974.
The one slight drawback of Cy's design - it might prove too elegant a display to pack away for travel purposes.
Board folded: 5.5” x 2.75” x 0.62”
Board open: 10.75” x 10.75"
Pieces: H: 1.37” x 0.75” (king)
Pieces: Nickel silver & 24K gold plated
Board: Stainless steel
Made In: USA, Switzerland