In this art and music activity for children we’ll look at famous art inspired by music and create our own art project in combination with different pieces of music.
Art and music activity for children
In this lesson you will:
:: be introduced to synesthesia and the idea of exploring the combination of music and art
:: look at examples of famous art inspired by music
:: create your own art project inspired by music
Synesthesia is a condition where people link their senses. They may see a piece of music in shapes or know the different numbers as colours.
While most of us don’t experience the world like this, painting to music is a way to combine our senses of sight and hearing.
This lets us explore how music can influence our mark making and drawing.
Famous art in focus
Over the years, many famous artists have taken direct inspiration from music to create their art. Wassily Kandinsky was inspired by Wagner’s Lohengrin, and used colour and shape to evoke sounds in his paintings. Take a look at Composition 8, which can be viewed at the Guggenheim Museum in New York.
Georgia O’Keefe painted using “the idea that music could be translated into something for the eye.” Her painting Music, Pink and Blue, no. 2 at the Witney Museum could be a starting point for your own experiments.
Or take a look at Stanton MacDonald-Wright’s Oriental: Synchromy in Blue – Green which is also at the Witney.
As you look at the artworks, answer these questions:
- What can you see?
- What words would you use to describe the artwork?
- Can you imagine how the music that inspired this art would sound?
ART PROJECT :: PAINTING WITH MUSIC
Can you take inspiration from a piece of music and use it as a spark to create art?
:: a selection of paper
:: paints or marker pens
:: your choice of music – see below for suggestions
Set out paper, paints and/or marker pens. This is a good time to have a wide selection of art materials available so everyone can freely choose the materials that call to them as they listen.
Then play a piece of music and take inspiration from what you hear.
Music to paint to
You might play one of your favourite songs, and draw or paint along to it.
Or try some styles of music that you are less familiar with, perhaps jazz, classical, punk or funk.
You can find Mood playlists on Spotify, including Melancholia, Psyched, Dance All Day, Dark and Stormy, and Creativity.
Try different music on different days and see how it affects your mood, and the art you feel like creating, as you listen.
There’s no right or wrong way to pair your music with your art.
Share your art with the NurtureStore community!
We would love to see the art you create! Share a photograph on Instagram with the hashtag #ideasfromnurturestore and join our community gallery.