Mechanics Institute Chess Room Newsletter #240

   I'm going to teach you the greatest of all games, the ethereal creation of human intelligence.

John Steinbeck writing in his novel Sweet Tuesday (1954) in praise of chess

1) Mechanics' Institute Chess Club News
2) Jane Grimm: The Chess Set
3) Igor Ivanov gives a lesson in the KID
4) Chess.FM
5) Dawg bites Man
6) Wojtkiewicz wins USCF Grand Prix
7) Upcoming Events

1) Mechanics' Institute Chess Club News

The 5th Annual Imre Konig Memorial was a fitting tribute to the well-loved International Master who made San Francisco his home from 1953 to the early 1970s. The strongest G/45 ever held at the MI saw Mechanics' Institute Grandmaster-in-Residence Alex Yermolinsky take top honors with 4.5 from 5. Tying for second at 4-1 were GM Suat Atalik, IM Ricardo DeGuzman and Dutch master Marcel Beilin. The top four finishers had perfect scores after three rounds with round four proving decisive for the final standings. Yermo drew with IM DeGuzman while Beilin upset GM Atalik who had a promising position but got low on time. Beilin, leading the event, was defeated in the final round of the competition by Yermo. Top Under 2200 was Yefim Bukh on 3.5. Also on that score in the 25-player event was MI Trustee Mark Pinto. Alex Yermolinsky played and directed for the MI.

2) Jane Grimm: The Chess Set

April 21 - August 10, 2005
Reception: April 21, 5 p.m. - 7 p.m.
Jane Grimm: The Chess Set
Oakland Museum of CA Sculpture Court
1111 Broadway
Located in downtown Oakland

The Oakland Museum of California Sculpture Court at City Center is a collaboration between the Oakland Museum of California and the 1111 Broadway Building.

Sculpture Court hours are Monday through Friday 7 a.m. - 7 p.m.; Third Thursdays 7 a.m. - 8 p.m. Closed on holidays.

Presented by the Oakland Museum of California Professional Services division
Professional Services Exhibition Archive

Oakland Museum of California (OMCA) Off-Site presents Jane Grimm: The Chess Set at The Sculpture Court in Oakland City Center. This exhibition features 16 monumental chess pieces, inspired by themes of femininity, war and the frivolity of life.

San Francisco artist Jane Grimm has been a practicing ceramic sculptor for over 30 years. Once a jewelry designer and manufacturer, Grimm has spent the past fifteen years exploring the theme of life as a game through her artwork. Depicting people as bowling pins, billiard balls and dartboard targets, her humorous sculptures reflect her observation that we are pawns in the game of life and therefore should not take it too seriously.

As this metaphorical theme evolved for Grimm, she began developing a series of female busts placed on columns, each adorned with symbolic imagery, such as tears, flames and vines. She supplemented these female icons with new ceramic pieces - pawns, towers, bishops and unicorns - to complete The Chess Set. The pieces are monumental in scale, measuring up to 6' in height. For Grimm, the large scale was an important element in emphasizing the power of the pieces. The neutral color palette further underscores this implication of force.

The characters in Grimm's set are of her own creation and only loosely based on those in a traditional chess set. While chess is often thought of as a dignified and cultured endeavor, Grimm's pieces reflect the aggression, power and strategy of the game. She incorporates her own iconography to explore the dichotomous issues of femininity and war. "The queen is the ultimate weapon in defense of the king. Although she is blindfolded or gagged, she retains ultimate power," explains Grimm. "While the unicorn is a symbol of chastity, it also can represent, with its twisted horn, an ambassador for the king during wartime. Fire and tears emitting from the eyes suggest the duality in thoughts of war - anger and fear, destruction and healing."

Grimm was born and raised in San Francisco, where she is currently living and working as a ceramic sculptor. She received her education on the East Coast at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston and at Sarah Lawrence College in New York State. After completing her formal training, she began her career as a jewelry designer and manufacturer in New York City. Her jewelry was featured in magazines such as Harper's Bazaar and Vogue and was sold in many department stores and boutiques across the U.S. and Europe.

While still on the East Coast, Jane started working with clay in the early 70's. She taught jewelry making and began raising her family. Upon returning to San Francisco, she continued to create jewelry while embarking on a more intensive study of clay. The sculptures in The Chess Set are coil-built using low-fire clay, underglazes and glazes.

In 1992, she received her MFA in Ceramics with High Distinction from the California College of Arts and Crafts, having studied with Viola Frey and Art Nelson. Her sculpture has been on display nationally in many museums, galleries and alternative spaces. She also has received corporate art commissions.

Her most recent exhibitions include Contemporary Craft at the Olive Hyde Gallery in Fremont, CA; Calm, Cool and Collected at the Richmond Art Center, Richmond, CA; and Subtractions & Additions: Ceramic Sculpture and Installations at the Ft. Mason San Francisco Museum of Craft and Folk Art.

Jane Grimm: The Chess Set is presented by the Oakland Museum of California in partnership with Shorenstein Realty Services. The exhibition is part of a changing exhibition series at Oakland City Center and represents an ongoing collaboration between the museum and Shorenstein to showcase contemporary artists. The Sculpture Court is located in the rear atrium lobby of 1111 Broadway

3) Igor Ivanov gives a lesson in the KID

Igor Ivanov gives a lesson in his favorite line versus the King's Indian, the Petrosian System, against the late Billy Colias.

Ivanov - Colias E92
Chicago International (3), 1992
Notes by Igor Ivanov

1.Nf3 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 d6 5.d4 0-0 6.Be2 e5 7.d5

The Petrosian System is a very solid one, in which White bases his hopes on the space advantage.

7...a5 8.Bg5

In this position I have tried 8.h3; 8.h4; 8.g3; 8.a3 and consider all of them quite good, but ; 8.0-0 or the text are more in "the book".

8...h6 9.Bh4 Na6 10.0-0 Qe8 11.Ne1 Nc5

I like this move although the book says that 11...g5 12.Bg3 Nxe4 leads to a quick draw.


12.Bxf6 Bxf6 13.Bg4 is a reasonable alternative, but have a bad memory of it.


12...Nh5 heading for f4 looks more energetic.


This move forces the Black Knight back to a6 or the uncomfortable text move by the Black Queen.

13...Qd7 14.Nd3 Nxd3 15.Bxd3 c5

Black wants to close the Queen's flank but the slow 15...c6 16.Nc3 c5 would be more prudent - the Knight on b5 is too dangerous.


White decides on Queenside action, but Black finds an interesting defense.


Now on 17.b4 Black has 17...Ba6 18.bxc5 Bxb5 19.cxb5 dxc5! (but not 19...bxc5 20.b6! and White is on top). Now the resulting position looks defendable for Black unless White decides on the pawn sacrifice 20.d6 Qxd6 21.Bf2, when White will dominate the light squares. Whether such an advantage is enough for a win is puzzling. I would not want to bet my wallet on i! But a much less evident continuation, namely 18.bxa5!, was a very good try for a win.


With the idea of meeting 17...Ba6 by 18.Ba4 and White's light squared Bishop becomes active.


A natural manuever, but it opens some more new opportunities for White, this time on the Kingside.

18.Bxf6 Nxf6 19.Qd2

With the obvious intention to continue with f3-f4 so Black strives to stop it.


Now that 20.f4 is seemingly impossible three different plans come to mind:.

20.b4 does not promise a certain victory due to massive exchanges, for example 20...Ba6 21.Ba4 Bxb5 22.Bxb5 Qc7 23.Bc6 Rab8 24.Rfb1 Kg7 25.Rb3 Ng8 26.Rab1 Ne7 27.bxc5 bxc5 28.Rb7 Nxc6 29.Rxc7 Rxb1+ 30.Kf2 Nd4 and Black is doing fine Of course White could play differently on many occasions, e.g. 29.dxc6 with the better position, but the fact is that I wasn't sure, while trying to imagine a possible course of events after 20.b4, that White would win.;

Another obvious assault begins with 20.h4 Once again it was difficult to forsee how the open h-file alone would bring White the victory.For example: 20...Nh7 21.hxg5 hxg5 22.Kf2 Kg7 23.Rh1 Rh8 24.Rh5 f6 25.Rah1 Ba6 26.g3 Bxb5 27.cxb5 Rag8 28.Kg1 Nf8 It is quite possible that White can improve this line which is no more than just an illustration of a master's thinking over the board.

Finally the question: Could f3-f4 be prepared by g2-g3? The question is sad and simple:; 20.g3 Nh7 21.f4 f6 and Black remains solid.But doesn't Black's position look somewhat flimsy, and couldn't that perforated construction be opened somehow? With violence if necessary.


I am proud of this move although the idea is as old as the game of chess. Remember 1.e4 e5 2.f4!.


20...exf4 21.g3 Nh5 22.Bd1 (22.gxf4 Nxf4 23.Rxf4 gxf4 24.Kh1 is good, too.) 22...g4 23.Rxf4 and White is on his way to victory.

21.g3 Kh7

Black wants to exploit the g-file and to keep his h-pawn protected, but the position of the Black King on the same diagonal as the White Bishop suggests recapture of the f4-pawn with the Rook.

22.Rxf4 exf4 23.e5+ Kh8

The Black King position is no longer defensible.

24.exf6 Qg4 25.Rf1 Bf5 26.Rxf4 Qg5 27.Bxf5 Qxf6 28.Bc2 1-0

Chess Life, July 1992, page 44

4) Chess.FM

Hi folks:

My internet radio show, Chess & Books with Fred Wilson, returned Tuesday evening, Marvh 15th, at 8:00 PM (EST). You can access it easily by simply going to the excellent website: . It will run every Tuesday night from 8:00 to 10:00 PM (EST), with a replay of the live show following almost immediately afterwards, for chess enthusiasts on the West Coast. There will also be a couple of replays the following afternoon. My sixth show,Tuesday evening, April 19th, 2005, will be:


So, if you missed any of these entertaining and informative interviews, with IM JOHN DONALDSON, BRUCE PANDOLFINI, IM LARRY KAUFMAN, GM MAURICE ASHLEY AND GM LEV ALBURT respectively, tomorrow is the time to catch up on whatever you missed! Next week, I will return with a new guest-as always, an important member of our chess community-and I will email you all ahead of time who that will be.


In future weeks I hope to have IM Jennifer Shahade, GM John Fedorowicz, GM Lev Alburt, GM Larry Christiansen, GM Alexander Baburin, GM Joel Benjamin, IM Jeremy Silman, IM John Watson, GM Max Dlugy and many, many more important members of our chess community on my show. Please feel free to email me interesting questions for these chess professionals.

I am very happy to be back and hope you will all listen in!

Best in chess, Fred Wilson

Fred Wilson Chess Books
80 East 11th Street Suite 334
New York, NY 10003
Hours: Noon-7:00 P.M.,
Monday through Saturday
Phone: (212) 533-6381

5) Dawg bites Man

"Every dawg has its day"

Frank Berry (1760) -

Movses Movsisyan (2250) [B34]

April FIDE Tulsa (2.2), 16.April.2005

[F Berry]

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 g6 6.Nxc6 bxc6 7.e5 Ng8 8.Bc4 Qa5 9.Qe2 Bg7 10.Bf4 Qb4

Afterwards all the Russians thought that MM overlooked the sure win of a piece: 10...d5 11.Bb3 d4? (&11...Ba6 Kriventsov) but 12.Qc4!! actually leaves White with the advantage 12...dxc3 13.Qxf7+ Kd8 14.0-0-0+ Kc7 15.Qxg7.

11.0-0 Ba6 12.Bxa6 Qxf4 13.Rfe1 Nh6 14.Rad1 Rd8 15.g3 Qb4 16.Ne4 0-0 17.c3 Qb6

Where it remains out of play and is unable to protect the Black castle in case of a crisis.

18.Ng5 f6 19.Bc4+ Kh8 20.exf6 Bxf6 21.Nh3 d5 22.Bb3 e5 23.Kg2 Nf5 24.Rd2 Nd6 25.Qg4 Ne4 26.Rde2 Kg7

27.f4 h5 28.Qf3

Not sure now what to do NM Movsisyan thinks for a long time and moves.

28...a5 29.Bc2 Nc5 30.fxe5 Bg5

30...Bxe5 31.Qe3 Bf6 32.Nf4

31.Nf4 Bxf4 32.gxf4 Ne6 33.f5 g5 34.f6+ Kh6 35.Qf5 Nf4+ 36.Kh1 Qc7 37.e6 Rh8 38.e7 1-0

6) Wojtkiewicz wins USCF Grand Prix

April 19, 2005 USCF Media Director
Press Release #14 of 2005 (845)565-8687

GM Aleks Wojtkiewicz of Maryland Wins The 2004 Grand Prix

(CROSSVILLE, TN)For the sixth time Grandmaster Aleks Wojtkiewicz takes first place in the Grand Prix. The 2004 Grand Prix, a United States Chess Federation competition, was sponsored by owned and operated by Hanon W. Russell.

Total case prize fund was $10,000.00 with an additional $5,000.00 in chess merchandise prizes. Wojtkiewicz wins $4,000.00 for his outstanding accomplishment with having scored 377.78 grand prix points. 2nd place went to Grandmaster Ildar Ibraginov of Connecticut with 327.52 points and 3rd to Grandmaster Jaan Ehlvest of New York who totaled 288.78 points.

Hundreds of chess tournaments run each year under the auspices of the US Chess Federation but only a few meet the criteria of being deemed Grand Prix Events. It is from these events that players achieve grand prix points based on their performance. The Grand Prix is an annual year long contest, held each year since 1979, that causes more frequent play by top players, encourages organizers to reward excellence by guaranteeing more prize money that Masters are eligible to win, and helps to raise money for USCF's Professional Players Health & Benefits Fund. is the third corporate sponsor in the history of the Grand Prix. The others were Church's Chicken (1979-1986) and Novag Computers (1988-1998). The event was sponsored by individual donors in 2001 and USCF in other years. This year's prize fund will be the largest since 2000 and will include 18 special merchandise prizes for juniors and seniors.

Other cash prize winners were:
4th place prize of $800.00: GM Alexander Ivanov of MA - 230.21 pts.
5th place prize of $700.00: GM Hikaru Nakamura of NY - 166.44 pts.
6th place prize of $600.00: GM Varuzhan Akobian of CA - 160.99 pts.
7th place prize of $500.00: International Master Andranik Matikozyan of CA - 158.47
8th place prize of $400.00: IM Stanislav Kriventsov of PA - 154.66.

$5,000.00 worth of chess merchandise credit will be distributed amongst:
9th place ($350.00 cr) GM Alexander Stripunsky of NY with 151.19 pts.
10th place ($350.00 cr) Stanislav Smetankin of MN with 146.66 pts.
11th place ($350.00 cr) GM Julio Becerra of NC with 140.14 pts.
12th place ($350.00 cr) GM Sergey Kudrin of NJ with 133.75

Two other categories of the 2004 Grand Prix were: Junior Categories and Senior Category. Winners in these age categories will also receive respective chess merchandise credit (1st: $300.00; 2nd $200.00, 3rd: $100.00) from

Junior Categories:
Born between 1981-1983: 1st place: GM Varuzhan Akobian of CA - 160.99 pts.; 2nd: FM Todd Andrews of TN - 61.70 pts.; 3rd: Andrew Samuelson of VA - 29.32 pts.
Born between 1984-1986: 1st: Kamil Miton of NY - 90.00 pts.; 2nd: IM Joshua Friedel of NY - 45.96; 3rd: Bruci Lopez of FL - 25.83.
Born between 1987-1988: 1st: GM Hikaru Namakura of NY - 166.44 pts.; 2nd: Dmytro Kedyk of NY - 55.41 pts.; 3rd: Thomas Gossell of MO - 25.40 pts.
Born between 1989-1990: 1st: FM Alex Lenderman of NY - 45.98 pts.; 2nd: Corey Acor of FL - 16.10 pts.; 3rd: Alexander Barnett of MD - 8.71 pts.
Born between 1991 and after: 1st: FM Fabiano Caruana of NY - 10.40 pts.; 2nd: Kasun Waidyaratne of OH - 9.00; 3rd: Michael Thaler of NY 6.25.

Senior Category: Born 1939 and before: 1st & 2nd tie between Zakhar Fayvinov of PA and Klaus Pohl of SC - 8.00; 3rd: Avraam Pismennyy of MA - 7.25 pts.

7) Upcoming Events

Upcoming Tournaments at the MI

Charles Powell Memorial - May 14

Northern California

The San Francisco Chess Festival will be held May 6-8 at Fort Mason. Go to for more information.

Southern California

April 23-24 Los Angeles County Open 5-SS, rds 1-3 30/85, SD/30, rds 4-5 40/2, SD/1. Sierra Vista Park, 311 N Rural Dr. at E Emerson, Monterey Park, CA 91755.
EF: $30 received by 4-21, $40 at door. Special EF: $10 for juniors not competing for cash prizes (trophies to top 5). $$1000: $$300-200-100, U2200 100, U2000 100, U1800 75, U1600 75, U1400/Unr 50. SCCF membership required ($14 reg, $9 jr.), other states accepted. Reg 8:30-9:30. Rds 10-2-6, 10-4. Up to 2 half-pt byes if requested w/entry. Inf: Randy Hough, (626) 282-7412, Ent: SCCF, PO Box 205, Monterey Park, CA 91754. NS. NC. W. State Championship Qualifier. GP: 10

May 28-30

2005 Lina Grumette Memorial Day Classic. 6-SS, 40/2, SD/1, 2?-day schedule rds 1-2 G/60. LAX Hilton, 5711 W Century Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90045. $$10,000 b/200, 60% of each prize guaranteed. In five sections: Open: $$T+1700-750-400-300-200, U2400 400, U2200 700-300-200. Premier (under 2000): $$750-300-200-100. Amateur (Under 1800): $$750-300-200-100. Reserve (Under 1600): $$750-300-200-100. Booster (Under 1400/unrated): $$T+400-200-100, U1200 T+150, Unr T+150. (Unrated may win Unrated prizes only.) Best game prize $25, all sections eligible. All: half-point byes available, limit 2, rds 5-6 must be requested with entry & cannot be revoked. SCCF membership req ($14, jr. $9), OSA. No checks or credit cards at door. Reg: 8-9:30 a.m. 5-28. Reg: 3-day 8-9:30 a.m. 5-28, 2?-day closes 6 p.m. 5-28. Rds: 3-day 10:30-5 Sat, 10-4:30 Sun-Mon, 2?-day: 6:30-8:45 p.m 5-28, then merges. EF: $81 if received by 5-26, $95 door, Booster section $66 adv, $75 door. On-line entry: Ent: SCCF, c/o John Hillery, 835 N. Wilton Pl. #1, Los Angeles CA 90038. HR: $89 (310) 410-4000, mention chess. Parking $6/day. Inf: NS, W, F. GP: 40. State Championship Qualifier

National and International

Paul Keres Memorial - May 20 - 23
Event Information
Location: Hungarian Cultural Centre, 728 Kingsway, Vancouver, BC
Sections: Open, Under 2000, Under 1600.
Time Control: 40/120, SD/60.
Rounds: Open: 7 Rounds, U2000, U1600: 6 Rounds
Round Times: Friday 5:30 (Open Section only); Saturday: 11:30, 5:30 / Sunday: 10, 4 / Monday: 9, 3 or ASAP.
Prizes: Guaranteed first prizes of $1000, $600 and $400 in their respective sections, other prizes based on entries.
Contact: Stephen Wright,, (604) 221-7148

Oklahoma Chess Foundation presents: GPP: 80 Oklahoma
2005 May 27,28,29,30. 24th North American FIDE Open 9-SS, G/120+10 sec, Holiday Inn (Holidome) 2515 W. 6th Ave (Hwy-51) Stillwater, OK 1-405-372-0800. HR: 60-60-60-60. EF: $40 if postmarked before May 22, $50 at door. EF refunded to FIDE rated players at end of event if at least 8 rounds were played and all FIDE player scoresheets turned in. Reg: Fri NOON-1:45pm. Rds: 2-7, 10-3, 9-2-7, 9-2. $$G 7,500 will not be lowered. $$G $1,000, $900, $800, $700, $600, $500. 11 plaques. $$G 600 each class X-D & below. Unr $100-$50. $100 upset. 2 byes rds 1-7. OCF req $10 from all players. Free Parking. ( 2005 OCF GP #3 ) Ent: Jim Berry PO Box 351 Stillwater, OK 74076. 1-405-762-1649. NC, CMV, LS, W, USCF, FIDE.

May 28-30 or 29-30 Washington Open. 6SS, 40/2, SD/1 (2-day option Rds 1-3 G/60) The new Lynnwood Convention Center, Seattle Area, 3711 196th St. SW, Lynnwood, WA 98036, 425-778-7155, free parking. Prizes: $$12,500 fully guaranteed. Format: 4 sections, Open: FIDE rated. EF $90 adv. Free Entry to GMs, IMs, WGMs. Prizes: $2000-1000-500-400-300-200-100-100, U2150: $600-400-200-100-100. Premier: U2000, EF $80 adv. $$1000-500-250-200-150-100-50-50, U1850 300-200-100-50-50. Reserve: U1700, EF $70 adv. $670-330-160-130-100-70-35-35, U1550: $200-130-70-35-35. Booster: U1400, EF $60 adv. $330-160-80-65-50-35-20-20, U1200 $100-72-36-20-20. UNR: $250-122-40-40-40. ALL: add $4 to any EF for 2-day schedule. All adv. entries must be rec'd by May 20th, add $12 if later or at site. Ten free raffle tickets for Laptop Raffle if entry rec'd by April 15, 5 free tickets if rec'd by May 1st. Canadians may pay $C at par. Reg: Sat, 3day 5/28 10-11:45, Sun, 2day 5/29 9-9:45. Rds: (3day) Sat 12:30-6:45, Sun 10-5, Mon 9-3, (2day) Sun 10-12:30-3-6:45, Mon 9-3. Byes: 2 avail. Rds 4-6 commit by end of Rd.2, irrev. WCF/OCF memb. req'd. OSA. Side Events: WA Blitz Champ. Sun 10:00 p.m., reg 9-9:45, EF $10. Blindfold Mini-Tnmt/Exhibit, Sat 5 p.m. (Reg. 4:30), Lecture: Sat 10:30- 12:00, to be announced. WCF Membership Meeting: Sun 4 p.m. Scholastic: Sat, 5/28, 5SS, G/30 in separate room. K-3, 4-6, 7-12, Trophy Awards. Rds: 10-11:15-1-2:15-3:30. Scholastic Entries to: WCF Scholastic Director, David Hendricks, 2439 220th PL NE, Sammamish, WA 98074, 425-868-3881, Clock Simul, Mon 12:30, G/75 (reg 11:30-12:15). Book/Software/Equipment Vendor, Snacks on site, nearby hotels, restaurants, shopping. HR $69 incl. cont'l breakfast, Best Western Alderwood, 19332 36th Ave. W, Lynnwood WA 425-775-7600, 1 block from Center, reserve by May 20. Ent/Info: WCF Tnmt Coordinator, Carol Kleist, 2420 S. 137th St, Seattle WA 98168 , 206-242-7076, All Checks payable to WCF. Also see

Las Vegas International Chess Festival

The Las Vegas International Chess Festival comprises of the following events: June 9th, Polgar Sisters Tandem Simul! For the first time in over 10 years the Polgar sisters, Susan, Judit and Sofia will give a tandem simul. June 9th, National Open Blitz Championship 7 double rounds, seeded Swiss format tournament. June 10th, Breakfast with the Polgar Sisters June 10th-12th, National Open Tournament $55,000 guaranteed prize fund! First place, $5000. 6 round, seeded Swiss format. 8 different sections. US Championship Qualifier. June 13th, US Game/10 Championship $5,000 guaranteed prize fund. 7 round, seeded Swiss format. June 13th-18th, US Senior Championship Open to US residents/citizens born before 6/13/1955. 6 round, seeded Swiss format, one round a day and this is also a US Championship Qualifier. June 13th-18th, US "Under 50" Championship Open to US residents/citizens born on or after 6/13/1955. 6 round, seeded Swiss format, one round a day. You can find out more information about all the above events, along with online entry at

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