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Meticulously charting Marcel's chess moves

by The Art Newspaper  |  22 March 2016
Meticulously charting Marcel's chess moves
Tom Hackney, Chess Painting No. 61 (Duchamp vs. Hanauer, New York, 1952), 2015
The British artist Tom Hackney, unlike Marcel Duchamp, has not given up on painting. But like the French Dadaist, Hackney has a reverence for chess—and specifically for Duchamp's approach to the game. Hackney's current show, Corresponding Squares: Painting the Chess Games of Marcel Duchamp at Francis Naumann Fine Art in New York (until 29 April) includes 18 abstract pictures that map exactly various games between Duchamp and his opponents. (Incidentally, an archive of Duchamp's games, which includes the precise moves of each player, is available at chessgames.com.) "It's literally a pentimento," says Naumann, referring to the term for when a painter leaves remnants of change in a picture. "When you look at the surface you can see the traces of each previous move beneath." The show is due to travel to the World Chess Hall of Fame in St Louis (9 May-11 September).

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