Tag Archives: Vasily Kandinsky

The Noisy Paint Box


The Noisy Paintbox: The Colors and Sounds of Kandinsky’s Abstract Art

Born in Moscow, Russia on December 4, 1866, Vasily Kandinsky was raised as proper boy. When he was a young boy, his aunt gave him a paint box. When he mixed the colors, he heard music. “The swirling colors trilled like an orchestra tuning up for a magical symphony.” But he ignored his noisy paint box.

Instead Kandinsky did what was expected – he studied law and became a lawyer. One night he attended the opera. As he listened to the music, he saw vibrant colors and his desire to paint flared once again. So he quit the law and studied painting. However, he did what was expected of him and painted pretty landscapes and ladies.


Finally, Kandinsky listened to his heart and took a risk.


He painted what he felt and allowed the world to see his paintings despite knowing the criticism his work would receive.



Kandinsky was born with synesthesia, which is when one sense triggers another sense. For Kandinsky, he experienced sound as colors. “I could hear the hiss of the colors as they mingled.” He is a respected leader of the abstract art movement.

This book promotes following one’s passion, taking risks, perspective, and creation of a new art movement.

TITLE: The Noisy Paintbox: The Colors and Sounds of Kandinsky’s Abstract Art

AUTHOR: Barb Rosenstock

ILLUSTRATOR: Mary Grandpré

PUBLISHER: Alfred A. Knopf, 2014


CREATIVE COMPONENTS: following one’s passion, taking risks, perspective, creation of a new art movement


1) Imagine what it would be like if you saw numbers as colors. What would 2 + 4 = 6 look like?

To learn more about synesthesia, https://faculty.washington.edu/chudler/syne.html

2) “Art should make you feel,” Vasya told his friends, “like music.” Look at some famous works of art. What artwork makes you feel happy, sad, confused, etc?


To learn more about author Barb Rosenstock, visit:


To learn more about illustrator Mary Grandpré, visit: