Chess: A Cross-Cultural Journey Through Time

ST. LOUIS, September 29, 2010 — Belas Artes, in partnership with the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis, presents Chess: A Cross-Cultural Journey Through Time, a multi-faceted art exhibit that reflects on the evolution and impact of the world’s most revered game.

The exhibit, part of the American Arts Experience – St. Louis, kicks off with an opening reception at Belas Artes on Thursday, October 7, at 5:30 p.m. Members of the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra and the St. Louis Classical Guitar Society will greet attendees with music accompanying a multi-cultural dance demonstration that highlights the origins and progression of the game of chess throughout history.

Traditional Indian dances, Flamenco, Salsa and more will be performed throughout the evening to demonstrate the breadth of cultures that have both embraced and helped shape the game.

International Chess Grandmaster Ben Finegold, currently ranked 17th in the country, will be on hand to answer questions and play chess with event attendees.

The reception, which is sponsored by Ameren and Novus International, will feature sangria, wine, beer and hors d’oeuvres and will be free to the public.

The interactive art exhibit will consist of three parts: the Opening, the Middle Game and the Endgame.

The Opening features an introduction to the game of chess including the names of the pieces and how they move, basic strategy and various opening techniques.

The Middle Game will feature a timeline and history of the progression of chess through the centuries, from its beginnings in China and India to its current status as the world’s most popular game. Participants can view examples of early chess sets and even practice what they have learned in the Opening in the interactive learning center, which features an oversized chess board and other sets available for public use.

Chess-related works of art will provide the aesthetic backdrop for the first two stages of the exhibit.

At the opening reception, the Endgame will reward attendees with a complimentary month membership to the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis as well as a workbook designed to hone chess-playing skills. The Endgame also will feature information about the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis (CCSCSL), which is widely regarded as the top chess club in the entire country.

In just two years, the CCSCSL has hosted the most prestigious chess tournaments in the country, crowning the U.S. Champion and U.S. Women’s Champion in 2009 and the U.S. Champion, U.S. Women’s Champion and U.S. Junior Champion in 2010. The club boasts more than 650 active members and has partnered with more than 30 schools to implement chess programming for area students.

After the opening reception on October 7, the event will run through November 19. The exhibit will then be available by appointment only until December 31.

This is just the first in a series of exhibits planned between the CCSCSL and Belas Artes. the Chess Exhibit Series will span two years, and subsequent exhibits will include A Universal Language of Power, Dueling Intelligences, Through the Looking Glass, and Majestic Queen.

Founded in 2005, Belas Artes is a non-profit arts organization that aims to promote the awareness and understanding of cultural diversity through art.

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American Arts Experience-St. Louis

Belas Artes is proud to be one of the select Art and Culture organizations in St. Louis to be part of the American Art Experience. For 17 days and nights, beginning October 1, the American Arts Experience – St. Louis will fill concert halls, museums, theaters, universities and outdoor spaces in the St. Louis area with dozens of performances and shows by renowned American artists and companies in disciplines ranging from symphonic music to jazz and singer-songwriters, theater by American playwrights and dance by American companies to major American visual artists. The American Arts Experience – St. Louis will be an annual festival each October celebrating all mediums of American arts.

Chess Daily News from Susan Polgar
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