Dubrovački muzeji

20.08.2020 - 15.11.2020

Nations Tournament: The 9th Chess Olympiad in Dubrovnik in 1950

The exhibition has been produced by Dubrovnik Museums, Cultural History Museum.

The exhibition presents objects from the 9th Chess Olympiad, which was held from August 19th to September 11th 1950 in the premises of the Art Gallery in Dubrovnik. These include items such as commemorative chess stamps, envelopes, postcards, letters, photographs, badges, books and magazines. A special feature of the Dubrovnik Olympiad was the specially made wooden pieces and boards created for the occasion. The chess pieces were designed by the well known artist Andrija Maurović and were made in the workshop of the master craftsman Vjekoslav Jakopović in Zagreb. Later, replicas of these pieces were made in both wood and plastic. In particular there was a plastic replica of figures with a matching chess clock in a case bearing the inscription 9th Chess Olympiad Dubrovnik 1950. These plastic figures became standard issue at all the more important tournaments in the world. The Dubrovnik chess set was loved by Bobby Fischer, one of the best players in the history of the game.

Sixteen teams applied to take part in the Dubrovnik Olympiad. As well as the hosts, Yugoslavia, there were teams from West Germany, Holland, Belgium, Austria, France, Finland, Sweden, Italy, Denmark, Norway, Greek, the USA, Argentina, Chile and Peru.

The Yugoslav team was composed as follows: 1.Svetozar Gligorić, international master (ciurrent Yugoslav champion), 2. Vasja Pirc, international master, 3. Petar Trifunović, international master and 4. Braslav Rabar, international master. The reserves were: 5. Milan Vidmar Jr, international master and 6. Stojan Puc, international master.

Some of the better known chess players who should be mentioned were grandmaster Miguel Najdorf and international master Julio Bolbochan, who were appearing in the Argentine team. Then there were grandmaster Samuel Reshevsky and international master Albert Horowitz of Israel and Larry Evans (USA), grandmaster and former world champion Dr Machgielis (Max) Euwe (Holland), grandmaster Dr Savielly Tartakower (France). Appearing in Dubrovnik for the first time in the history of chess Olympiads was a woman player, Chantal de Silans Chaudé, also for the French team.

After fifteen rounds had been played, all the teams playing each other, and after seventeen hard days of competitive chess, the winner of the 19th Chess Olympiad in Dubrovnik was the team of the FPR of Yugoslavia. It had had eleven team wins, three draws and just one loss. The second place was taken by the Argentine team, and the third by West Germany.


Author of exhibition: Tonko Marunčić

Consultant: Zdenko Krištafor

Visual set up: Ivona Michl

The exhibition was produced with financial support from the City of Dubrovnik