Amazing Johnny Cash web art project

While the relentless barrage of information deadens our brains and Facebook sucks out our souls through strained and reddened eyeballs, it just takes a little gem of a web art project to remind you what an amazing place the internet is.


(N.B. The video at the top is just a documentary about The Johnny Cash Project. To experience the project in its full glory visit the site.)

A tribute to Johnny Cash, this global collaborative art project is based on the late singer’s last studio recording, Ain’t No Grave (from his posthumously released album of the same name). Project masterminds Aaron Koblin and Chris Milk designed a web-based drawing interface and invited Johnny Cash fans worldwide to create their own interpretation of video footage of The Man in Black by drawing one frame each. These thousands of unique frames, each drawn by a different artist, were then woven into one amazing animated work of art.

Like Darren Solomon’s amazing multi-video composition that we featured a while back, The Johnny Cash Project makes the viewer into the artist. Not only can you add your own drawings to the work (go and get involved!), you can also select from options to watch videos in different styles, filtered by tags on the individual frames, e.g. only abstract drawings, or those with the most brushstrokes. The default video plays the most highly rated frames – so it’s democratic too.

Aaron Koblin, Creative Director of Google’s Data Arts team, is no stranger to collaborative art on the web. We’ll keep a couple of his others up our Amazing sleeves for later treats, but if you can’t wait check out his recent TED talk, where he reveals all his tricks.

The Johnny Cash Project

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