I recently finished this new go design that incorporates a fascinating 9x9 endgame problem.
This swordfish is the 13th drawing in my series of go artwork that features animals, paper marbling and of course the game of go itself. I sell these works as postcards and posters in various sizes.
I came across this endgame problem on the Facebook page of BIBA - Blackie's International Baduk Academy - a go school (go is called baduk in Korea) in Seoul. BIBA is specifically aimed at Westerners who want to study the game. The head masters of the school, Diana Koszegi and Seungjun Kim, kindly gave me permission to use their go problem in my art.
The endgame problem is interesting for two reasons. At first glance, the position seems to be taken from a real match that was played on a 9x9 board, but on closer inspection it turns out that there are 21 stones for black and 23 for white. It is black to play and no stones have been captured. In these circumstances, in a real match both black and white would have the same amount of stones on the board. So we can conclude that this is a constructed problem. The second reason is the solution. Tip: think outside the box.
Do you want to know the solution? Have a try in the game editor below. I have included several diagrams so it is not apparent on first glance which of these is the solution. Enjoy.
If you do not have Flash player, you can download the solution as an .sgf-file.
Today I want to introduce a new part of my blog called Looking Back, which I will use every now and then to share artwork that I have created in the past. As the first post of Looking Back, I would like to share a series of 12 go artworks that I have made so far.
This ongoing series features animals, paper marbling (known as suminagashi in Japan and ebru in Turkey) and the game of go (known as igo in Japan, baduk in Korea and weiqi in China). Several of these designs refer to the names of patterns and shapes in the game of go that often are derived from nature. For other artworks I took inspiration from famous go matches or gave my own twist to commissioned work.
I sell these designs as postcards and posters in various sizes. This project started little over a year ago, when I realised I want to offer my art in an affordable format. I did however want to be able to guarantee the best quality possible and that is why I decided to make the products myself at home. After taking a chance and purchasing a professional printer in December 2018 I soon found out that it is not easy to find the right paper. Not too thin and shiny for the postcards, not too thick and plain for the posters. After several frustrating weeks of failed tries I finally found the right materials and started offering my work online. Since then I have worked together with many go organisations as well as individual buyers.
For those of you who are new to the game of go: go is a strategic board game in which black and white take turns, placing stones on a board, specifically on the intersections of the indicated lines. The goal of the game is to surround territory with your stones and whoever has surrounded most territory at the end of the match wins. The rules of go are simple, but the game never gets boring as there is an almost infinite amount of possibilities that makes every match you play a new challenge.
I have been hooked on go ever since I started playing in September 2004. The game, mind sport, art of go or whatever you want to call it has had a significant influence on my life. It gave me an outlet for my competitiveness, made me part of a community, influenced my drawings and even got me several jobs promoting the sport. You can read more about my go background in the GAME OF GO tab.