Color and Timbre Gestures: An Approach with Bicategories and Bigroupoids

Maria Mannone*, Giovanni Santini, Esther Adedoyin, Carmine E. Cella

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


White light can be decomposed into different colors, and a complex sound wave can be decomposed into its partials. While the physics behind transverse and longitudinal waves is quite different and several theories have been developed to investigate the complexity of colors and timbres, we can try to model their structural similarities through the language of categories. Then, we consider color mixing and color transition in painting, comparing them with timbre superposition and timbre morphing in orchestration and computer music in light of bicategories and bigroupoids. Colors and timbres can be a probe to investigate some relevant aspects of visual and auditory perception jointly with their connections. Thus, the use of categories proposed here aims to investigate color/timbre perception, influencing the computer science developments in this area.

Original languageEnglish
Article number663
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • Bicategories
  • Category theory
  • Complexity
  • Cross-modal correspondences
  • Equivalence classes


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