Art Culture Technology

Wassily Kandinsky’s Paintings Come Alive Thanks to Google’s New Tool

Play a Kandinsky lets you hear Yellow Red Blue
ARS Mundi

Wassily Kandinsky (Vassily Kandinsky), a Russian painter, and art theorist was the pioneer of abstract art. He introduced abstract art to the world and along with it, inspired a generation of artists.

Wassily Kandinsky had a rare neurological condition called synesthesia (which is not a disorder). This allowed him to hear colors and shapes through different sounds.

The painter could hear trumpets when he saw the color yellow. The color blue brought him a heavenly calmness with the sounds of the organ. And red made him restless as violins played in his head. Thus, he created one of his most famous paintings Yellow Red Blue.

Kandinsky in his studio
Russia Beyond

To commemorate Wassily Kandinsky and his unique contribution to art, Google has created a new project, Play a Kandinsky.

Google’s Play a Kandinsky Project Lets You Hear Paintings of Wassily Kandinsky.

Play a Kandinsky is a creation of Google Arts & Culture. It lets you dig deep into the mind of Wassily Kandinsky and get an idea of how his imaginations worked. This interactive tool lets you hear colors and shapes just like Kandinsky might have when he painted them.

Google partnered with two experimental musicians, NSDOS and Antoine Bertin. Together, they studied Wassily Kandinsky’s writings which detailed his multisensory perception. Then, Google used machine learning to create a specific tool that can imitate his imagination while creating Yellow Red Blue.

Play a Kandinsky lets you hear Yellow Red Blue
ARS Mundi

The “Play a Kandinsky” tool lets you experience Wassily Kandinsky’s 1925 masterpiece hovering through its colors and shapes. Depending on what you click, it produces different sounds that Kandinsky might’ve heard. Along with that, it also gives detailed information about what the sounds, shapes, and colors symbolize.

Play a Kandinsky is a joint effort by Google Arts & Culture and The Centre Pompidou, Paris. And the famous painting they’ve included is a part of “Sounds like Kandinsky,” in an effort to preserve Kandinsky’s life and legacy.

Also Read: Suzanne Valadon: An Overlooked Painter and Feminist Icon

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