Van Gogh pie-charts


22 Responses to “Van Gogh pie-charts”

  1. notavegan says:

    Just so we can all check ourselves for a Pas/Fail rating, is there a list of paintings to go with this?
    (I am only really sure of about 3 and not willing to commit myself in public.)

    I think the pie charts are lovely in their own right, but the colour choices come from a master.

  2. spincycle says:

    These palettes reminded me instantly of the many sets gathered at

  3. franko says:

    back again. i think the bottom left one is the potato eaters.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Yay for 2D pie charts! I hate when 3D is used for 2D data.

    • AnthonyC says:

      I recently watched a lecture about giving scientific talks, and this was one of the insights: There are tools in office software (like powerpoint) which are designed to help you obscure information. 3D bar graphs were the example he gave. Remember, not everyone making graphs wants their audience to draw the proper conclusion.

  5. Anonymous says:

    I swear Van Gogh didn’t use the computer.

  6. Anonymous says:

    The most directly similar prior work of which I am aware is “Flags by Colours” by Shahee Ilyas (2007), in which the artist computed similar pie charts for the flags of all the world’s nations:

    Buxton’s work demands that the colors of Van Gogh’s paintings colors be quantized or clustered into bins. It looks like Buxton arbitrarily chose 5 as the number of bins for each painting’s colors. Obviously, though, there are more than 5 colors in a Van Gogh painting. Ilyas’ project, by contrast, is a direct transduction of the flag’s colors into pie charts, without an arbitrary data-reduction step.

  7. chgoliz says:

    Count me as another who hopes he’ll divulge the answers soon.

    There’s even less info on his blog.


  8. Arthur Buxton says:

    Limited edition prints available of this, and two more new editions; Monet and Matisse visualizations. Answers will be revealed at the show, and on my blog shortly after that!

  9. Quasimondo says:

    Reading the headline I had already hopes that you were referring to this:

  10. irksome says:

    This makes me think of Readers Digest Condensed Books. Or Cliff Notes.

  11. dross1260 says:

    My display is off, is that hex or pms?

  12. Anonymous says:

    Shouldn’t one of them be missing a slice on one side?

  13. kmoser says:

    Hmmm, those look like unauthorized derivative works.

  14. Anonymous says:

    I did the exact thing with one of my favorite artists, Pontormo, in the early 80′s.

  15. Anonymous says:

    They are all hay stacks.

  16. Anonymous says:

    Me too Quasimondo. I had just copied your url to paste it here. BTW, I thought your circle pack treatment of Madame X and Alexander Sakharoff were particularly nice. And your Mondrian made me laugh quite a bit — brilliant.

  17. nas097 says:

    I don’t see any copying of expression from the artwork, just some unprotectable ideas. :)

  18. franko says:

    i submit that the first one on the top/left is Starry Night, and the second one in from the left is this portrait, from when he lived in paris:

    after that, i’m a bit stumped. LOVE THIS.

  19. Anonymous says:

    reminds me of brian piana’s work:

  20. SamSam says:

    Aw man, I just assumed that I’d be able to click on the pie charts and find out which painting each represents. Why doesn’t everything instantly work the way I think it will?

    The only one I’m going to guess at is Starry Night, second row, two from the left. Although interestingly, Google Imaging to confirm my hunch, I see that the blues in the painting can vary wildly depending on who’s taking the photo and how, going from a deep royal blue for the night sky all the way to an odd turquoise. I wonder which versions of images were chosen to make this pie chart.

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