08 October 2020

The Th??e of Chess

In last week's post, October 1970 & 1995 'On the Cover' (October 2020), with artist Samuel Bak represented on the October 1995 Chess Life, I mentioned,

The two page feature on Samuel Bak included five color photos of the artist's chess paintings, a list of four concurrent exhibitions, and an appreciation by Bernard Pucker, whose gallery had set up a permanent exhibition.

If you happen to have a scanned copy of that issue of CL, available from the resource I promoted last year in US Chess CL Archive (November 2019), the two page Bak feature looks like the following image.

The thin white line down the center of the image separates the left page from the right page, where both pages were folded sloppily for the scanning process. You would probably never guess that the title of the article is 'The Theme of Chess'. In my post on the 'CL Archive' I mentioned,

Unfortunately, the document scans aren't first rate -- many pages are skewed and/or clipped on the side of the magazine fold, and the text is often too light, making it difficult to read -- but who's complaining?

Ten months later I'm complaining (just a little bit). Luckily I have paper copies of CL going back to 1992, so I have access to good copies of all articles from that time on. Pity the poor researcher who needs to read the text hidden by the page fold. Why go to the trouble of scanning hundreds of magazines, tens-of-thousands of pages without some quality standards?

[NB: While I was checking how far back my paper copies started, I noticed that the January 1992 cover of CL also featured Samuel Bak. The three page spread inside the magazine included nine works not repeated in the October 1995 CL.]

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