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Vintage artisan Greek Chess Set, mid 20th Century

Imaginative mid-century work by American artist from Sheffield Massachusetts(?) representing iconic figures of historic and art importance.

This very unique and rare chess set is truly thirty two sculptures with erotic(?) emphasis. The pieces are hand crafted and have a somewhat grotesque look and finish of famous art-sculptures. All the figures appear to be nude with their musculature on display. The King, a pot-belly monarch (Zeus sitting his throne in Olympia?), with a big nose and large chin, appears to be holding on his throne with a leg over one edge, the tumescence of his privates obvious. The (large) queen is standing on the toes of one leg with the other pulled up. She exhibits enormous wings and large breasts, holding a staff with icon for female at the top.

May be modeled after a statue of a Greek goddess possibly Nemesis, Nike, Aphrodite or even Athena. The Bishops heads are split at the top like horns, but sideways, with legs in a running-walking stance. They are holding a crooked top staff. The Knights seems to be modeled after the famous "End of the Trail", sculpted by American-born artist James Earle Fraser. The rooks are a figure sitting atop a turret which is held above a phallus complete with testicles. Finally, the Pawns are bowed-head men carrying staffs with knobbed tops, their bellies protruding, standing stoically.
It seems that the figures were created using a welding metal wire techniques.

The handmade pieces are in brass-bronze, non-magnetic alloy, one side darkened to create the desired contrast. The figures differ in style and size and are all finished using small globules around the bases and throughout the piece.

Many thanks to Israel Raphaelli for the description and the photos.

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