July 11, 2014

In 1918 Artist, sculptor and chess enthusiast Marcel Duchamp designed and hand-carved a chess set in Buenos Aires. Marcel Duchamp has created two chess sets in his life: his 1943 Pocket Chess Set was released as a limited edition, but his 1918 set, is owned by a private collector and since then, unseen by the public.

But now, thanks to 3D printing, artists and makers Scott Kildall and Bryan Cera, teamed up to recreate the tabletop chess set using an archival photograph of Marcel Duchamp's own custom and hand-carved game. By running a series of geometry-extrapolating algorithms on the photograph, Cera were able to get an accurate model of the knight, the hardest to model. Cera then sent the finished 3D CAD files over to Kildall who printed out the first set of prototypes using an Objet 3D printers.

"The idea was not only to rebuild the lost objects, but to release open-source digital files to be 3D-printed by anyone interested in resurrecting the objects for themselves," Cera wrote. "In homage to the original set's owner, we decided to call this kind of re-animated, re-configured and re-claimed object a 'Readymake'."

"Inspired by Marcel Duchamp's readymade -- an ordinary manufactured object that the artist selected and modified for exhibition -- the readymake brings the concept of the appropriated object to the realm of the internet, exploring the web's potential to re-frame information and data, and their reciprocal relationships to matter and ideas." Kildall explained. "Readymakes transform photographs of objects lost in time into shared 3D digital spaces to provide new forms and meanings."

The best things, the two makers then made the files available on Thingiverse and allow users to download.

"Duchamp said in the 1960s, about his readymade creations, 'I'm not at all sure that the concept of the readymade isn't the most important single idea to come out of my work'," Kildall wrote. "Today, in an age of digital fabrication and open source design, the boundaries between concept and object continue to blur. We invite other thinkers and makers to join our exploration of conceptual-material formations -- to discover and create with our readymakes, and contribute their own."

Duchamp's Chess set was not meant to be mass-produced. But thanks to 3D printing and some digital archeology, anyone can have their own variations of chess set made by one of the most influential artists in 20th century.

Below are some cool prints from the maker community based on Marcel Duchamp's design:

brackett27's Readymake: Duchamp Chess Set printed in ABS and then vapor-treated in an acetone fuming chamber.

raster's metallic set:

Posted in 3D Printing Applications

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Laurentiu wrote at 5/25/2017 3:32:20 PM:

I made a 3D cubist Pegasus ridden by Godiva ASCENDING stairs, as a tribute to Duchamp's DESCENDING nude. https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10211099252735340&set=a.1804045059030.2092600.1176978583&type=3&theater

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