Searching for a new visual language at the beginning of the 20th century, many artists were inspired by musical forms and ideas in their early experiments in abstract art: Paul Klee took the fugues of Bach as the model for his multi-layered paintings; Wassily Kandinsky’s friendship with the avant-garde composer Schönberg encouraged the development of his free, expressive style; and later in the century, jazz became a model for artistic improvisation in the work of Piet Mondrian, Alan Davie and others.

This exhibition explores these relationships and other ideas, including the phenomenon of synaesthesia and the ability to ‘hear’ colours, the spectacle of sound and light performances, and early prototypes of abstract film.