Joan Miró. “Hirondelle Amour”. 1933–34. Oil on canvas, 6' 6 1/2" × 8' 1 1/2" (199.3 × 247.6 cm). Gift of
Nelson A. Rockefeller. © 2019 Successió Miró/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York/ADAGP, Paris

The Music of Miró

This playlist by Joan Miró’s grandson, Joan Punyet Miró, is inspired by the artist’s life and work.
It was 39 years ago when, in my grandparents’ house, I recall hearing music coming down the stairs from the library above, where my grandfather would seclude himself to read and listen to music—his other two passions beside his art.

Inspired by his childhood memories, Joan Punyet Miró, the grandson of artist Joan Miró, took on the challenge of understanding his grandfather through his love of music. Punyet Miró cataloged his grandfather’s vast collection of records—some with covers Miró designed—mapping sounds to colors and energies. His research led him to publish Miró & Music, a comprehensive analysis of the music the artist listened to and lived with. For Punyet Miró, music, by composers from Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart to John Cage, helps expand a viewer’s experience of his grandfather’s art, “practically making him or her part of the piece.” In this spirit, Punyet Miró developed the playlist below, which pairs specific works in MoMA’s exhibition Joan Miró: Birth of the World, with musical compositions beloved by Miró.

Click the links in the captions underneath each painting to hear the song paired with that work. Scroll to the bottom for an aggregated playlist.

Portrait of Enric Cristòfol Ricart accompanied by Gymnopedies, I. “Lent” by Erik Satie

The Table (Still Life with Rabbit) accompanied by “Angelina” by Cobla Barcelona

Still Life—Glove and Newspaper accompanied by 3 Morceaux en forme de poire, IES 38: VI. En plus by Erik Satie

Still Life I accompanied by String Quartet No. 2, “Intimate, Spacious” by Ben Johnston

The Hunter (Catalan Landscape) accompanied by The Four Seasons, “Summer,” Presto by Antonio Vivaldi

The Family accompanied by Sonata for Two Pianos and Percussion Sz110: III Allegro non troppo by Béla Bartók

The Birth of the World accompanied by The Rite of Spring, “First Part: Adoration of the Earth, Introduction” by Igor Stravinsky

Person Throwing a Stone at a Bird accompanied by “Dance for Burgess” by Edgard Varèse

Dutch Interior (I) accompanied by Ouverture [No.2] in B Minor, BWV 1067: VII. Battinerie by Johann Sebastian Bach

Portrait of Mistress Mills in 1750 accompanied by Concerto for Two Pianos in A-flat Major, MWV O6: III. Allegro vivace by Felix Mendelssohn

Relief Construction accompanied by “Kontakte” by Karlheinz Stockhausen

Object accompanied by Mikrophonie I, Work No. 15 by Karlheinz Stockhausen

“Hirondelle Amour” accompanied by Symphony No. 40 in G Minor, K. 550: I. Molto allegro by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Painting accompanied by “Invenció Movil II” by Josep Maria Mestress Quadreny

Woman (Opera Singer) accompanied by Selva morale e spirituale, SV 252: “O ciechi, ciechi” by Claudio Monteverdi

Head of a Man accompanied by “Aria with Fontana Mix” by John Cage

Help Spain accompanied by Concierto de Aranjuez, II: Adagio by Joaquín Rodrigo

Still Life with Old Shoe accompanied by “Metastasis for 61 Musicians” by Iannis Xenakis

The Escape Ladder accompanied by Suite bergamasque, I: Prélude. Moderato by Claude Debussy

The Beautiful Bird Revealing the Unknown to a Pair of Lovers accompanied by Suite bergamasque, L. 75: III. “Clair de lune” by Claude Debussy

Mural Painting accompanied by Piano Concerto No. 5 in E-flat Major, Op. 73, “Emperor”: I. Allegro by Ludwig van Beethoven

Mask accompanied by Symphonie “Les Echanges” by George Gruntz

Songs selected by Joan Punyet Miró

Joan Miró: Birth of the World is on view through June 15, 2019. Buy tickets today.