The World Chess Championship Chess Set

Daniel WeilPentagram Architect, Daniel Weil, has designed the World Chess Pieces.
A post-graduate of London's Royal College of Art, Daniel has worked with international companies like ALDO group, United Airlines and many others and most recently is famous for his unorthodox and complex clock designs.
Andrew Paulson, the brains behind 'World Chess' brought Daniel on board to develop the chess pieces, which previewed at the recent Chess Candidates tournament in London's Savoy place.

The design is more of a reinvention rather than a complete departure from the Staunton outline. Daniel is quoted as saying that ' When the initial Staunton set was produced there was great precision – since then a disrepair had set in. I had to unravel the rationale behind the original set.'

The Parthenon and the world Chess Pieces For him to accomplish this he has remained the origins of the original Staunton set, looking back in history to Neoclassical Architecture that the original design was focused on. In particular he scrutinized the facade of classical buildings, he mentions the Greek Parthenon in particular. Daniel has chosen to mirror the angle of the cornice, which is the roof section of the building within the height of the chess pieces as they are presented on the chessboard. This results in a gentler, more even variation in height between the chess pieces, a characteristic most obvious with the King and Queen.

World Chess Campionship Chess Knight World Chess Campionship Chess King Most of the other proportions remain very similar to a classic Staunton set. The King has the largest diameter base, as it should have, the Rook a wider base than the Knight. The Shanks are unusual as they are more like columns, less concave and tapered than Staunton. The pieces that hold the most interest are the King and the Knight. The Crown of the king features a very simplified, deeply inset cross that is more a suggestion, as there is no lower vertical section. Also, the crown of the king has eight arches subtly carved into it, something never done with a Staunton King. The Knight is probably the greatest departure though. It is mentioned that Daniel based this on the Elgin Marbles Horse, which is in the process of dying in agony. It appears more symbolic and a less literal representation of a horse compared to Staunton, with a long, curling neck and a chin groove that is in parallel with the shoulder below.

The North & South Holding of the world Chess Pieces

Great attention has been placed on balance and the holding of the chess pieces, something that should be of paramount importance with all chessmen. Daniel pinpoints this with the King, suggesting that the incurvate design of the crown and the wider diameter collar allow for two distinct methods of holding, from above (North Hold) and also from underneath (South Hold). In practice it's hard to say if having this facility assisted within the design will be constructive.

Another departure is with the base of the chess pieces, which traditionally are lined with a green felt or Baize material. In extending the idea of competition between opposites, Daniel has decided to place white baize on the light, boxwood and a black on the dark, black stained chessmen.