b'shapes and colours that related to the musicsSo you take the spectrum of colour, which dynamics and rhythms.sharesadoublingoffrequencyfromone During the years, several more attempts were endtotheother.Youtakethatandlay madetomatchcompositionswithshapesitontopoftheoctaveofsound.Most and colour. His most successful experimentpeopleusetheirintuitiontounderstand though was with children. As part of a tour to howcoloursrelate.ButasIwasmaking promote his exhibition The Wonder Years, the colourthatmusicianswantedtoplay,opportunity arose to conduct three workshops. it had to be very logical and specific. TheseinvolvedtheinteractionoffourSmithertookthenoteAthelowest musicians and some children aged betweenfrequencyand the colour red, which is the four and 11. The children were given smallbase of the lowest frequency of the colour squares of coloured paper and asked to makespectrum. The rest is quite logical. a pattern, gluing them onto sheets of card.Reactiontotheartworkshasbeenvery Smither then marked the square of colour onpleasing. Six were even excited enough to each card with the equivalent musical note.buy the works, he jokes. Abby Sisam from ThemusicianscannedandplayedtheseArtis says many children enjoyed the show. patterns of notes as they saw them and thenIt had a visual language. Even if you cant as directed by the children. Having tried outunderstand the complexities of the music, the patterns on the musicians, many childrenyou still respond at a visceral rather thanchose to add to or alter their pattern to heara cerebral level.the difference. The resultant sounds andAllthecoloursusedinthepaintingsare random combinations of patterns as lines ofResenewaterbornedecorativepaints,children filed one by one up to each musicianpaints Smither has used all his life. The factAboveThree works from was spellbinding, says Smither.thattheyarebasedonBritishStandardMichaels recent exhibitionThe Colour of 12 Sounds.The Colours of 12 Sounds pushed Smitherscolours means that if the works ever need investigationsfurtherbydescribingthe to be restored, then you can find exactly the colour of a note in the octave and showingright colours.Michael Smither used eachcoloursharmonicsinaseriesofUsing Resene paint offered a new connectionReseneconcentric circles. Bright Redwhich inadvertently inspired Smithers nextReseneSmithers son also concealed small devicesexhibition. In talking to Resenes chemist, BroomI think he was quite puzzled by my idea. ButResenethat you could push at the bottom cornerGovernor Bayof the paintings. These emitted a short piecehe did alert me to an idea about an actualReseneof music, composed by Smither, which hadhue of colour. That got me thinking, this timeGrenadierResenestructurally the same set of musical notes forI only got it half right. So next time, I am notJapanese Laureleach painting. The more vibrant the colour,going to have coloured backgrounds. TheyReseneKingfisher Daisythe more energetic the sounds. will be black or white. It will be the width of Resenethe lines that represent the position of theLochmaraSmither says his idea was very simple. Itsoctave. Ive added white which makes theResenequasi-mathematical.YoutaketheoctaveObservatoryline diminish. I realise what I was doing wasReseneasaphenomenonthatsmadebytakingtrying to knock opinion with a sledgehammer.Pizazza string and dividing it in half. From oneAll I needed to do was keep the width of theReseneendoftheoctavetoanother,youget Pompadourcolours related to the vibration length andResenea doubling of the frequency.note, and that would be sufficient to expressRio GrandeReseneWesternmusicisdividedinto12notes.the idea.Yellow Sea 83'