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A CGI Monkey Sees Sounds and Hears Colors in This Synesthesia-Inducing Film

Filmmaker Frédéric Bonpapa transposed the contemporary stylings of Steve Reich into a short film complete with its own CGI monkey.

by Becky Chung
Nov 20 2014, 6:00pm

Light Motif from Frédéric Bonpapa on Vimeo.

Synesthetes experience one sensory stimulation as another, like this man who can "hear" color. Inspired by the idea of being able to "see" music, filmmaker Frédéric Bonpapa transposed the contemporary stylings of Steve Reich's Music for 18 Musicians – Section II into Light Motif, a colorful, architectural, short film complete with its own CGI monkey.  

"The inspiration for the project stems from the relationship between music and the visual arts, illustrated by artists such as Wassily Kandinsky, Oskar Fischinger, Norman McLaren or John Whitney," explains the video description. "These works try to establish precise connections between sounds, shapes, colors and movements, to visually translate the concepts of rhythm, melody, harmony, pitch, timbre and intensity." As the textured soundscape flows from "polyphonic perception to global perception," the visuals echo their continunities and discontinuities, resulting in an audiovisual experience you don't need synesthesia to love.

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