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Jennifer on A Winter Visit to STL Print E-mail
By Jennifer Shahade   
March 1, 2013
The World's Largest chess piece in front of the WCHOF and "Q Boutique"
The World’s largest chess piece greeted me upon my arrival to the World Chess Hall of Fame in Saint Louis last month. Next week artist Bill Smith is opening “Beyond the Humanities.”   Before art, Bill was a biologist and he approaches his craft with the precision of a chessplayer. He was tweaking a copper wire when I walked up the museum stairs for a meeting. An hour later, he was tweaking the same copper wire.  

The World Chess Hall of Fame will take over the center of the board this fall, when “A Queen Within: Adorned Archetypes, Fashion and Chess” opens. The show features many pieces by the late fashion designer, the legendary innovator Alexander McQueen, who used a chessboard in lieu of a runway for a 2005 show “You’ve got to know the rules to break them. That’s what I’m here for, to demolish the rules but to keep the tradition.”

I’m excited to be part of the plans, as I’m sure the show will further the growing popularity of chess and the connection between chess, fashion and female power.

I also gave a series of lectures over at the Saint Louis Chess Club, most of which were recorded on http://www.youtube.com/STLChessClub. Some of my favorites were Intermediate Class on “Quiet Moves”, a Beginner’s Kids Class on Double Attack and a lesson on the Aronian-Anand game.  

Between Webster and Lindenwood, the college chess scene is booming in Saint Louis, and it's typical to run into titled college students at the club.

With Ecuadorian chess master Carla Heredia at Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis

I visited Lindenwood in person to teach the “B” team before the US Amateur Team North. I also saw “A” team members Kostya Kavutskiy, Best of CLO winner and WGM Anna Sharevich. Anna stars in this stunning advertisement for cell phones, "The blonde side was more natural for me", she told me.  
The next major competition coming to Saint Louis is the US Chess and US Women’s Chess Championships from May 2-15—more details coming soon to CLO and uschesschamps.com.

Find out more about World Chess Hall of Fame exhibitions on their award-winning website. You can follow weekly GM lectures on the STL Chess Club YouTube. Also join USChess on YouTube.