A Memorable Life: A Glimpse into the Complex Mind of Bobby Fischer
July 24, 2014 – June 7, 2015
July 23, 2014 (Saint Louis, MO) – From his earliest years as a child prodigy to becoming the only player ever to achieve a perfect score in the U.S. Chess Championships, from winning the World Championship in 1972 against Boris Spassky to living out a controversial retirement, Bobby Fischer stands as one of chess’s most complicated and compelling figures.
A Memorable Life: A Glimpse into the Complex Mind of Bobby Fischer opens July 24, 2014, at the World Chess Hall of Fame (WCHOF) and will celebrate Fischer’s incredible career while examining his singular intellect. The show runs through June 7, 2015.
“We are thrilled to showcase many never-before-seen artifacts that capture Fischer’s career in a unique way. Those who study chess will have the rare opportunity to learn from his notes and books while casual fans will enjoy exploring this superstar’s personal story,” said WCHOF Chief Curator Shannon Bailey.
Several of the rarest pieces on display are on generous loan from Dr. Jeanne and Rex Sinquefield, owners of a a collection of material from Fischer’s own library that includes 320 books and 400 periodicals. These items supplement highlights from WCHOF’s permanent collection to create a spectacular show.
Highlights from the exhibition:
· Furniture from the home of Fischer’s mentor Jack Collins, which can be seen in an image of the young prodigy seated and sharpening his skills
· Notebooks created for Fischer’s world championship preparation by International Master Robert Wade that include annotations of games by Soviet Grandmaster Mark Taimanov and Tigran Petrosian, two opponents that he defeated in the 1971 Candidates Matches
· The famous “Red Book” of Boris Spassky’s best games, which Fischer studied constantly during his preparations for the 1972 World Championship
· Drafts of Fischer’s classic chess publication My 60 Memorable Games with handwritten notes from Fischer and Larry Evans
“Bobby is one of the game’s most enduring figures because everyone can learn something from his story. If you’re a player, you can study his brilliant games and improve your own. Those who are merely curious about Fischer can see how he faced challenges and be inspired by his intellect,” Bailey said.
About Robert “Bobby” Fischer
Robert “Bobby” Fischer was named the 11th World Chess Champion when he defeated Boris Spassky of the Soviet Union in a 1972 match that came to symbolize the tensions of the Cold War. This title brought him his highest level of fame and was the defining achievement in a career that included many notable triumphs. Fischer won the U.S. Open in 1957 and was the youngest person to gain first place in the U.S. Chess Championships in 1957/58, a title he would ultimately earn eight times. He won 20 consecutive games in World Championship qualifying events–an all-time record. His book, My 60 Memorable Games, is widely considered one of the greatest pieces of chess literature ever written.
About the World Chess Hall of Fame
The World Chess Hall of Fame (WCHOF) is a nonprofit organization committed to building awareness for the cultural and artistic significance of chess. It opened on September 9, 2011, in Saint Louis’s Central West End after moving from previous locations in New York and Miami.
The WCHOF is housed in an historic 15,900 square-foot building that includes three floors of galleries, the U.S. and World Chess Halls of Fame and the stylish Q Boutique. It sits immediately across Maryland Avenue from the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis, forming a “chess campus” that has been recognized as the chess capital of the United States as well as one of the game’s top international centers.
It is the only cultural institution of its kind in the world and the only solely chess-focused collecting institution in the U.S.