Edvard Munch’s Famous Painting “The Scream” Animated to the Sound of Pink Floyd’s Primal Music

In this short video, Roman­ian ani­ma­tor Sebas­t­ian Cosor brings togeth­er two haunt­ing works from dif­fer­ent times and dif­fer­ent media: The Scream, by Nor­we­gian Expres­sion­ist painter Edvard Munch (1863–1944), and “The Great Gig in the Sky,” by the British rock band Pink Floyd.

Munch paint­ed the first of four ver­sions of The Scream in 1893. He lat­er wrote a poem describ­ing the apoc­a­lyp­tic vision behind it:

I was walk­ing along the road with two Friends
the Sun was set­ting — the Sky turned a bloody red
And I felt a whiff of Melan­choly — I stood
Still, death­ly tired — over the blue-black
Fjord and City hung Blood and Tongues of Fire
My Friends walked on — I remained behind
– shiv­er­ing with anx­i­ety — I felt the Great Scream in Nature

Munch’s hor­rif­ic Great Scream in Nature is com­bined in the video with Floy­d’s oth­er­world­ly “The Great Gig in the Sky,” one of the sig­na­ture pieces from the band’s 1973 mas­ter­piece, Dark Side of the Moon. The vocals on “The Great Gig” were per­formed by an unknown young song­writer and ses­sion singer named Clare Tor­ry.

Tor­ry had been invit­ed by pro­duc­er Alan Par­sons to come to Abbey Road Stu­dios and impro­vise over a haunt­ing piano chord pro­gres­sion by Richard Wright, on a track that was ten­ta­tive­ly called “The Mor­tal­i­ty Sequence.”  The 25-year-old singer was giv­en very lit­tle direc­tion from the band. “Clare came into the stu­dio one day,” said bassist Roger Waters in a 2003 Rolling Stone inter­view, “and we said, ‘There’s no lyrics. It’s about dying — have a bit of a sing on that, girl.’ ”

Forty-two years lat­er, that “bit of a sing” can still send a shiv­er down any­one’s spine. For more on the mak­ing of “The Great Gig in the Sky,” and Tor­ry’s amaz­ing con­tri­bu­tion, see the clip below to hear Tor­ry’s sto­ry in her own words.

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Relat­ed Con­tent:

30,000 Works of Art by Edvard Munch & Oth­er Artists Put Online by Norway’s Nation­al Muse­um of Art

Hear How Clare Torry’s Vocals on Pink Floyd’s “The Great Gig in the Sky” Made the Song Go from Pret­ty Good to Stun­ning

Hear Lost Record­ing of Pink Floyd Play­ing with Jazz Vio­lin­ist Stéphane Grap­pel­li on “Wish You Were Here”

Pink Floyd’s David Gilmour Sings Shakespeare’s Son­net 18

The Night Frank Zap­pa Jammed With Pink Floyd … and Cap­tain Beef­heart Too (Bel­gium, 1969) 

Three Pink Floyd Songs Played on the Tra­di­tion­al Kore­an Gayageum: “Com­fort­ably Numb,” “Anoth­er Brick in the Wall” & “Great Gig in the Sky”

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  • Thea O'Grady says:

    This is a remark­able video. I used it for a Munch pre­sen­ta­tion at a Sons of Nor­way pre­sen­ta­tion. I don’t know if the group liked it, because not much was said–typical for Nor­we­gians, I guess.

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