Chess club

Richard Bevan 2010

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Chess Club 35mm, 2 hours, or Looped B/W silent
Chess Club was made on the invitation from Sean Edwards to contribute a piece of work to his ongoing project, ‘portrait (for a screenplay) of Beth Harmon’. For the project individuals are asked to make a work in response to reading ‘The Queen’s Gambit’ by Walter Tevis, a novel that tells the story of a child chess prodigy from the death of her parents at age 8 to chess grandmaster. Chess Club is one of two films made for this project that directly reference a found image of a young chess player Sean has used in several contexts.

Chess Club records a girl sitting at a chess board thinking, planning her next moves, a process that is described brilliantly by Walter Tevis in the novel. The audience are placed in opposition to this image of the young chess player, while also becoming a mirror, reflecting elements of her thought processes in thinking about the art work projected on the screen before them.

For O4W Chess Club has been blown up from it’s original 16mm film format to 35mm for projection in a cinema. The film will be projected for two hours, a duration that suggests both that of a feature film, and of a game of chess.

Richard would like to thank Frank Gulley and the pupils of Temple Sutton Primary School for their help and input in the making of the films.

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