The pieces in this chess set by American designer Stefan Gougherty are formed from voids drilled into transparent acrylic blocks (+ slideshow).
Pieces in Gougherty's Negative Space Chess Set are made from transparent acrylic cubes with different negative spaces cut into them. The voids are then painted. "After researching various methods of fabricating something clear," Gougherty told Dezeen, "I realised that drilling cavities inside acrylic blocks using a milling machine would produce a new expression, especially when exaggerated with paint."
The central voids are shaped to look like pared-down versions of traditional chessmen. "The challenge was [to translate] the classic chess pieces we are familiar with into distilled geometric cousins," said Gougherty.
Each shape refers to the way the piece moves around the board. For example, the knight is L-shaped to indicate that it can move two squares in one direction and one in another. "Before this project I knew very little about chess," Gougherty revealed. "It was fascinating to learn how the game evolved and why the pieces are styled the way they are."
The bishop is represented as an angled line because it travels across the board diagonally. Other pieces are simplified versions of their standard counterparts.
The chessmen can be strung together using the centre holes and cube shapes allow the pieces to stack for storage. The sets were commissioned by American interiors firm Geremia Design and come in either yellow, white or red with black.