Language of Color
a study group of the AIC


Call for papers: AIC 2024 Midterm Meeting: Color Design, Communication and Marketing

Posted on 2024-01-27 - link

AIC 2024

AIC 2024

Call for Papers for the upcoming AIC2024 Midterm Meeting in São Paulo, Brazil, 16–19 September 2024.

On behalf of the International Color Association, the AIC2024 Organizing and Scientific Committees invite you to participate and submit abstracts in English related to the conference theme: Color Design, Communication, and Marketing. The deadline for abstract submission is 20th February 2024.

More details here

Meeting of the Study Group on the Language of Colour at AIC 2023, Thailand

Posted on 2023-09-28 - link

Figure 1. Colour encoding and neural representation. (A) Colour matching functions.  (B) Distribution of unique hue settings.  (C) Lateral view of the macaque brain showing functional domains biased for colours and faces. (D) Geometry of the neural representation of colour for neurons. (Source: Conway et al., 2023, Figure 2, CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 Deed;

Figure 1. Colour encoding and neural representation. (A) Colour matching functions. (B) Distribution of unique hue settings. (C) Lateral view of the macaque brain showing functional domains biased for colours and faces. (D) Geometry of the neural representation of colour for neurons. (Source: Conway et al., 2023, Figure 2, CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 Deed;

Topic: Exploring the Language of Colour Beyond Primary Colours in the Age of AI

Date: 29 November 2023

Time: 04:00-05:15 PM

Location: 15th AIC Congress 2023, Chiang Rai, Thailand

Chair: Dr Dimitris Mylonas, Northeastern University London, UK


The longstanding notion of primary colours has been foundational in colour studies. However, extensive research into their very existence has produced inconclusive results. Compelling neurobiological evidence from Conway et al., 2023 now suggests that it is time to move beyond traditional paradigms (Fig 1). Added to this, advancements in Artificial Intelligence (AI) can offer us large language models to explore this relatively uncharted colour domain in different languages.

In this meeting of the Study Group on the Language of Colour (SGLC), we will open a discussion on the implications of this new understanding for future research on the language of colour beyond primary colours, as well as related challenges and opportunities that the rise of AI presents for our field. This meeting is open to SGLC members and all AIC 2023 attendees who are interested in this topic and joining our study group.

Benefits of joining the SGLC meeting:

  • Connect with a community of scholars and practitioners who are passionate about the cognitive aspects of colour
  • Learn about the latest research in the field
  • Share your own insights and perspectives

Anticipating a vibrant exchange of knowledge and ideas!

Call for papers: Special Collection on Color Cognition, Color Research and Application

Posted on 2023-06-02 - link



We are excited to announce the launch of the ‘Color Cognition’ Special Collection! We encourage contributions from members of SGLC on this interdisciplinary topic.

Color cognition examines the complex relationship between color perception, language and culture. This Special Collection aims to explore multiple aspects of color cognition, presenting cutting-edge research, theoretical frameworks, and innovative applications. Potential submission topics include color discrimination, and naming, categorization, cross-cultural differences, color memory, developmental studies, and semantics and semiotics of color. We encourage contributions from diverse fields such as psychology, neuroscience, linguistics, anthropology, philosophy and computer science.

More information

Editors: A. Prof Dimitris Mylonas (Co-Chair of SGLC), Prof Galina Paramei (Co-Chair of SGLC), Prof Jules Davidoff

Call for papers: AIC2023, Chiang Rai, Thailand

Posted on 2022-12-08 - link

The 15th Congress of the International Colour Association AIC 2023, opens for abstract submission from 1st December to 28th February 2023. The conference will take place in Chiang Rai, Thailand, from 28th November to 2nd December 2023. Selected paper will be invited for special issues in international color journals including Color Research and Application. Visit our website for more details:


Posted on 2021-11-11 - link

June 13–16, 2022

Venue: OCAD University, Toronto, Canada

Organized by Colour Research Society of Canada (CRSC)

Conference Co-Chair(s): Doreen Balabanoff & Robin Kingsburgh

We are very excited to invite you to participate in AIC 2022 Midterm Meeting on the theme “Sensing Colour” to be held in Toronto, Canada, June 13–16, 2022.

The conference will be hosted at OCAD University, Canada’s oldest and largest school for art and design education, known for its iconic Will Alsop building in the heart of Toronto (

We encourage in-person participation as much as possible, but remote/online participation will be available for those who are unable to attend otherwise.

The theme “Sensing Colour” offers a great breadth of opportunity for participants from diverse disciplines and modes of inquiry to contribute to colour awareness and knowledge in an interdisciplinary forum. It highlights how colour offers itself to us, in what ways it approaches and engages us, affects our awareness, and harnesses our attention. In so many diverse ways, and through so many different lenses, colour is being studied as an influential shaper of human experience.

Through all our senses and faculties – through intellectual, cultural and material ways of knowing and feeling – we seek to observe and utilize the remarkable complexity of colour, whether material or immaterial, whether conceptual or practical, sociological or biological, natural or technological. Potential topics include, but are not limited to, those listed under “Colour Topics” below. Abstract & Summary Submission

Authors are invited to submit an 800-word abstract (plus References) for review, following the guidelines and using the template available at the AIC 2022 website (link below).

All submissions must be in English and describe original work that has not been published or submitted elsewhere. Using a double-blind review process, the Program Review Committee will consider all abstracts. The deadline for submission is Friday, January 7, 2022.

All eligible student submissions will be automatically considered for an AIC Student Award.

The CRSC encourages and prioritizes submissions from equity deserving communities including Indigenous, Black, People of Colour, LGBTQ2SIA and communities with diverse abilities.

The following categories are welcome: Oral and Interactive/Poster.

Abstract & Summary Submission website

New Editor-in-Chief at Color Research & Application

Posted on 2021-09-16 - link

Professor Andrew Stockman of the UCL Institute of Ophthalmology is the new Editor-in-Chief of Color Research and Application. He holds the Steers Chair of Investigative Eye Research at the UCL Institute of Ophthalmology and is an Honorary Consultant at Moorfields Eye Hospital. He earned a BA in experimental psychology at Oxford University and received his PhD from Cambridge University in 1984 for work on human colour vision. For the next 17 years, he worked at the University of California at San Diego, first as a NATO/SERC Postdoctoral Fellow, then as a research scientist. In 2001, he became a professor at the UCL Institute of Ophthalmology, where he leads the Visual Neuroscience and Function theme.

More in his bio.

SGLC Meeting AIC 14th Congress 2021

Posted on 2021-09-01 - link

14:45-14:50 Galina Paramei: Introduction

14:50-15:15 Emanuela Valeriani & Lourdes García Ureña: The language of color in the Bible (Hebrew, Greek, Latin): A methodology to approach the meaning of color terms

15:15-15:35 Maria Del Viva, Ilaria Mariani, Carmen De Caro, Galina Paramei: Florence blues are clothed in triple basic terms

15:35-15:55 Mari Uusküla: From Welsh gwyrdd to Italian azzurro: Translation of colour language between and within languages

15:55-16:15 Galina Paramei & Dimitris Mylonas: Discussion & the SGLC by 2021

More info

New Publications on Colour Language by Co-Chair Prof Galina Paramei

Posted on 2021-05-05 - link

We are delighted to announce two recent studies on colour language by our SGLC’s co-chair Prof Galina Paramei.

a) Paramei G. V. & Bimler D. L. (2021). Language and psychology. In A. Steinvall & S. Street (Eds.), A Cultural History of Color, Vol. 6, The Modern Age: From 1920 to present (Ch. 6, pp. 117-134). London: Bloomsbury.

b) Bochkarev V. V., Shevlyakova A. V., Paramei G. V. & Rakhilina E. V. (2021). A quantitative study of Russian colour terms buryj and koričnevyj in the Google Books Ngram corpus. Linguistic Forum 2020: Language and Artificial Intelligence, Moscow 12-14 November 2020. CEUR Workshop Proceedings, vol. 2852

International Colour Day 2021: Colour and Poetry Symposium 19 – 22 Mar 2021

Posted on 2021-02-20 - link

Poster design by Lisa Milroy. Photography by Thomas Jenkins

Poster design by Lisa Milroy. Photography by Thomas Jenkins

Colour & Poetry: A Symposium is a cross and interdisciplinary four-day event held by the Slade in celebration of International Colour Day, World Poetry Day and World Pigment Day.

The symposium hosts a range of speakers representing the arts and humanities, science and industry, drawing upon knowledge from within and outside of the UCL community, it includes presentations, readings, performance and practical workshops.

More info

Free Registration

AIC 14th Congress (Online) 2021 - Newsletter January 2021

Posted on 2021-01-25 - link

This issue of the Newsletter brings you our wishes for an outstanding year as well as an essential information on the AIC 14th Congress Milan 2021: on January 5th the Gruppo del Colore – Associazione Italiana Colore in agreement with the AIC has decided to organize the AIC 14th Congress online.

The registration fee for the 5 days of the Congress has consequently been reduced.

The Call for papers is open and you are invited to submit your abstracts via EasyChair. Deadline submissions is March 31, 2021.

We are announcing two special sessions: ”ALL THE RECENT BOOKS ON COLOUR” and “LIGHT BEYOND COLOURS: THE NC-CIE ITALY”.

To date, five AIC National Groups, six Italian Associations and one Academic Institution have decided to patronage the 14th AIC Congress.

Color Research and Application

Posted on 2020-07-06 - link



Dear members,

the Impact Factor of Color Research and Application has increased to 1.091. Your contributions are essential to reaching this milestone for the journal. Thank you for sharing in its success!

More info Color Research and Application.

Call for Abstracts AIC 2020 Interim MEETING

Posted on 2019-11-25 - link

Pont d’Avignon

Pont d’Avignon

AIC 2020 Avignon

Natural Colours - Digital Colours

October 6-9th 2020

Popes’ Palace, Avignon, France

Important Dates for Abstract Submission:

  1. Deadline for Abstract Submission: 5th April 2020 5:00pm (GMT)
  2. Notification of Abstract Acceptance: 6th of June 2020

for more info visit

AIC 14th Congress Milano 2021

Posted on 2019-10-14 - link

The fourteenth congress of the AIC in 2021 will be held at the historical Ca’ Granda building. It is a Renaissance building, commissioned by the Duke of Milano Francesco Sforza as a public hospital, designed by the Florentine architect known as “il Filarete”. The construction began in 1456 continuing and expanding in the following years. During the Second World War it was partially destroyed by bombing and the damages were repaired using as much as possible the original materials. Its reconstruction is considered a masterpiece of conservative restoration. Since 1958 it has been the headquarters of the Università degli Studi di Milano.

The city of Milano, founded in 590 BC, is located in the Po Valley near the Alps and Lake Como. It is the recognized world capital of Design and Fashion, as well as the center of Italian media, industrial, financial, and fair and trade activities. It is also a scientific and cultural center in which many areas of human activity are intertwined, such as the multidisciplinary model of the AIC. It is an international and multi-ethnic city in which the Central European and Mediterranean cultures mix. Milano is the Italian capital of hospitality, and host city for the 2015 Expo and for the Winter Olympic Games in 2026.

Milano is ready to welcome the participants of the 14th AIC Congress, coming from all over the world, interested in presenting and listening to all the scientific and cultural themes of human activity in which color intervenes.

AIC 14th Congress Milano 2021
August 30th – September 3rd 2021

Ca’ Granda, Università degli Studi di Milano
Via Festa del Perdono, 7 – 20122 Milano, Italy

First Call for Papers for the Progress in Colour Studies 2020

Posted on 2019-09-06 - link

PICS 2020 Logotype

PICS 2020 Logotype

Dear Colleagues,

This is the First Call for Papers for the Progress in Colour Studies 2020 (PICS 2020) conference. The 5th Progress in Colour Studies conference will take place at Tallinn University, Tallinn, Estonia on 17th-19th June, 2020. The aim of the Progress in Colour Studies 2020 conference is to provide a forum for discussion of recent and ongoing research and bring scholars from different disciplines together. Authors are encouraged to consider their own specialist colour expertise in the broader context of colour at the intersection of many disciplines. We therefore welcome proposals for papers on colour studies from any area of interest, including but not limited to the following topics:

  • Linguistics, psycholinguistics and colour in languages

  • Colour in literature and poetry

  • Translation of colour

  • Vision, perception, cognition, memory

  • Design, fashion

  • Architecture, art, history, heritage, culture

  • Imaging, computation, analysis, modelling

  • Illumination, optics, photography, technology

  • Conservation, chemistry, materials, surfaces

Confirmed keynote speakers are: Asifa Majid (University of York, UK) Delwin T. Lindsey & Angela M. Brown (Ohio State University, USA) Galina Paramei (Liverpool Hope University, UK) Carsten Levisen (Roskilde University, Denmark)

Along with the four keynote lectures, the conference will host oral and poster presentations. Abstract submission deadline is 30th November, 2019. For more information, please visit the conference website or contact We look forward to welcoming you to PICS 2020!

Mari Uusküla (Chair of the Organising Committee, Tallinn University), Sirli Peda (Head of Tallinn University Conference Centre), Domicelė Jonauskaitė (University of Lausanne), Julia Tofantšuk (Tallinn University), Kristjan Kask (Tallinn University), Merilyn Meristo (Tallinn University), Margus Vihalem (Tallinn University), Kaidi Rätsep (Independent researcher)

Categorical colour geometry by Lewis D Griffin & Dimitris Mylonas

Posted on 2019-05-11 - link

A Voronoi partition of the full colour surface

A Voronoi partition of the full colour surface

Ordinary language users group colours into categories that they refer to by a name e.g. pale green. Data on the colour categories of English speakers was collected using online crowd sourcing – 1,000 subjects produced 20,000 unconstrained names for 600 colour stimuli. From this data, using the framework of Information Geometry, a Riemannian metric was computed throughout the RGB cube. This is the first colour metric to have been computed from colour categorization data. In this categorical metric the distance between two close colours is determined by the difference in the distribution of names that the subject population applied to them. This contrasts with previous colour metrics which have been driven by stimulus discriminability, or acceptability of a colour match. The categorical metric is analysed and shown to be clearly different from discriminability-based metrics. Natural units of categorical length, area and volume are derived. These allow a count to be made of the number of categorically-distinct regions of categorically-similar colours that fit within colour space. Our analysis estimates that 27 such regions fit within the RGB cube, which agrees well with a previous estimate of 30 colours that can be identified by name by untrained subjects.

Full Open Access Article.

CfP_ "Speaking and writing about colours" Workshop (Milan, November 28-29, 2019)

Posted on 2019-03-28 - link

Vassily Kandinsky (1913) Color Study – Squares with Concentric Circles (reproduction in public domain)

Vassily Kandinsky (1913) Color Study – Squares with Concentric Circles (reproduction in public domain)

Call for papers

Milan, November 28-29, 2019

Speaking and writing about colours

“Colour is a power which directly influences the soul” ― Wassily Kandinsky, Concerning the Spiritual in Art

The most exquisite paradox of colour is that it comprises the possibilities of the logical (conceptual) and eidetic (sensorial-figurative) ways of world cognition. For philological studies, this peculiarity of colour is fundamental; once the colour is lexically expressed in a literary text, it transforms non-verbal (eidetic) experience into verbal (logical) coding. At the same time, “colour, in a western technical sense, is not a universal concept and in many languages there is no unitary terminological equivalent” (Conklin 1955).

The referents of colour terms fall into a number of broad general categories of both environmental and cultural importance. A word can either “remember” or “forget”, even “reconstruct” some notions relevant to a speaker’s cultural tradition. Colour can be expressed in a language either explicitly (i.e., by naming directly the colour itself or describing it through another colour) or implicitly (i.e., via naming an object that has a characteristic typical colour assigned by a cultural tradition); this method inspires appearing of associative and connotative semes (Uporova 1995). Colour metaphors are pervasive across languages, very often related with the conveyance of emotional content, yet also very variable in their content association.

When analyzing colour in literature, it is crucial to consider the entire artistic specificity of the text where colour merely makes a part. In this case the study of colour involves an analysis of colour-related poetic figures, the arrangement of colour nuances in the text, and their correlation not only with the strophic and rhythmic organization of the text, but also with other artistic categories, such as space and time. All this allows seeing “how colour resists language and also how it ceaselessly requires and solicits language” (Harrow 2017).

This workshop addresses the representation of the phenomenon of colour in linguistics, literature, philosophy, and arts.

Papers are welcome on the topics listed below:

  1. Semantics & Semiotics

  2. Literature

  3. Translation Studies

  4. Media Studies

  5. Arts & Culture

Keynote speakers: Prof. Dr. Maria Grossmann, Glottologia e linguistica, Università degli Studi dell’Aquila Prof. Paolo D’Achille, Linguistica italiana, Università degli Studi Roma Tre Prof. Christine Mohr, Laboratoire d’étude des processus de régulation cognitive et affective, Université de Lausanne Dr. Élodie Ripoll, Romanische Literaturen, Universitat Stuttgart

The workshop languages are English, Italian, French, and Russian (the latter three require an abstract in English). Speakers should be prepared for a 20-minute presentation followed by questions.

Please send an abstract of no more than 300 words as email attachment in .doc format to the Scientific Board (victoria.bogushevskaya[at] or davide.vago[at] by June 15, 2019. Proposals should contain paper title, full name(s), institutional affiliation, and contact details. Notification of abstract acceptance or rejection can be expected by July 1, 2019.

Workshop dates: November 28-29, 2019 Location: Department of Linguistic Sciences and Foreign Literatures, Catholic University of the Sacred Heart, Milan, Italy

Scientific Board:

Victoria Bogushevskaya: victoria.bogushevskaya[at]

Davide Vago: davide.vago[at]

AIC 2019 Call for papers

Posted on 2018-12-14 - link



On behalf of the International Color Association, the AIC 2019 Organizing and Scientific Committees, invite you to participate and submit abstracts related to the theme of the meeting: “Color and Landscape”. The theme covers different aspects of the landscape, including its visions, constructions, and configurations.

The concept of landscape has a double existence: the observer and what is observed. It can be thought of as having natural and social configurations; a product of actions and interactions of nature and humans; a perception by a social group and individuals.

The landscape has an objective and subjective character; it is a social and cultural construction, a visual reality and a mental image, a transformation from the idea of terrestrial surface to that of identity in a society.

More info.

Just published! Progress in Colour Studies: Cognition, language and beyond

Posted on 2018-12-04 - link

Book Cover

Book Cover

The volume (24 chapters, 470 pages) presents authoritative and up-to-date research in colour studies by specialists across a wide range of academic disciplines, including vision science, psychology, psycholinguistics, linguistics, anthropology, onomastics, philosophy, archaeology and design. The chapters have been developed from papers and posters presented at the Progress in Colour Studies (PICS2016) conference held at University College London in September 2016. All chapters have been rigorously peer-reviewed and revised to ensure the highest standards throughout.

Available from Benjamins.

A new open-access journal article of members of our study group on object-derived Russian colour names

Posted on 2018-10-26 - link

Munsell array segmented by object-derived Russian colour names

Munsell array segmented by object-derived Russian colour names

Objects as culture‐specific referents of color terms in Russian by Yulia A. Griber, Dimitris Mylonas, Galina V. Paramei


The present study is an extension of our analysis of Russian basic color terms (BCTs) elicited in a web‐based psycholinguistic experiment. Color samples (N = 600) were approximately uniformly distributed in the Munsell color solid. An unconstrained color‐naming method was employed. Native Russian speakers (N = 713; 333 males) participated in the study. Among 1422 elicited unique color words, 698 terms (49%) were derived from object names. Here we explore object‐derived non‐BCTs, focusing on broad classes of names referred to objects, categories within these, and the inventory of color terms, as well as their frequency, patterns of derivation, and derivational productivity. Six classes of object referents were identified: flora, fauna, inanimate nature, food and beverages, man‐made objects, body and bodily products. In detail, 20 most frequent object‐derived terms are reported. These are accompanied by analysis of gender differences and representation of the terms’ denotata on the Munsell Mercator projection. In addition, Russian object‐derived color terms are related to those in English; discussed are differences between the 2 languages in the color term classes, inventories and incidences. We conclude that Russian object‐derived color terms follow the generic metonymy pattern, that is, signifying color of objects in the speakers’ natural environment. The inventory is also language‐specific, reflecting social practices, preferences and views entrenched in the traditional Russian culture. Furthermore, recent extensive development of the inventory signals 2 novel phenomena: marked globalization influence, surfacing as abundant transliteration of English referent loanwords, and noticeable sociolectal diversification that manifests itself by novel evocative color terms, particularly in marketing and advertisement.

Full Article

Next Meeting of the AIC Study Group on the Language of Colour at AIC 2018, Lisbon, Portugal.

Posted on 2018-09-24 - link

AIC 2018

AIC 2018

Time and date: Thursday 15th September at 16:50 – 18:00.

Location: Room 1, Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, Lisbon, Portugal.

Chair: Ivar Yung & Maggie Maggio

Meeting of the AIC Study Group on the Language of Colour at Munsell 2018, Boston, US

Posted on 2018-06-11 - link

Munsell 2018

Munsell 2018

Time and date: Friday 15th June at 15:15

Location: Lecture Hall, Design and Media Center, Massachusetts College of Art & Design, Boston, US


Welcome & Introductions

Purpose of the Study Group

Talk: Color naming across languages reflects color use by Edward Gibson (MIT)

Report by the Chair: Past activities, current status and future directions

Open Discussion

Ted Gibson (MIT) will give a talk on colour language in the SGLC meeting at the Munsell 2018

Posted on 2018-04-24 - link

The image shows 80 Munsell color chips rank-ordered left-to-right by how effectively the color of the chip is communicated, using the words in a particular language. Each row shows data for a given language, including the 110 non-industrialized languages of the World Color Survey, plus English, Bolivian-Spanish, and Tsimane’ (data that our lab gathered). The 80 color chips were selected so as to be maximally saturated and evenly spaced across the Munsell color space. The key result is that across all languages, regardless of the sophistication of their color-naming systems, warm colors (e.g., red, orange, yellow, brown) are communicated more efficiently than cool colors (e.g., blue, green), as evidenced by the concentration of warm colors in the left side of the image.

The image shows 80 Munsell color chips rank-ordered left-to-right by how effectively the color of the chip is communicated, using the words in a particular language. Each row shows data for a given language, including the 110 non-industrialized languages of the World Color Survey, plus English, Bolivian-Spanish, and Tsimane’ (data that our lab gathered). The 80 color chips were selected so as to be maximally saturated and evenly spaced across the Munsell color space. The key result is that across all languages, regardless of the sophistication of their color-naming systems, warm colors (e.g., red, orange, yellow, brown) are communicated more efficiently than cool colors (e.g., blue, green), as evidenced by the concentration of warm colors in the left side of the image.

Color naming across languages reflects color use.

Ted Gibson, Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, MIT reporting work by:

Edward Gibson, Richard Futrell, Julian Jara-Ettinger, Kyle Mahowald, Leon Bergen, Sivalogeswaran Ratnasingam, Mitchell Gibson, Steven T. Piantadosi and Bevil R. Conway in PNAS (2017)

Finding explanations for the observed variation in human languages is the primary goal of linguistics, and promises to shed light on the nature of human cognition. One particularly attractive set of explanations is functional in nature, holding that language universals are grounded in the known properties of human information processing. The idea is that lexicons and grammars of languages have evolved so that language users can communicate using words and sentences that are relatively easy to produce and comprehend.  In this talk, I summarize results from an exploration of color words cross linguistically, from an information-processing point of view.  First, I show that word lengths are optimized on average according to predictability in context, as would be expected under an information theoretic analysis. And second, I apply a simple information theory analysis to the language for color. The number of color terms varies drastically across languages. Yet despite these differences, certain terms (e.g., red) are prevalent, which has been attributed to perceptual salience. Our work provides evidence for an alternative hypothesis: The use of color terms depends on communicative needs. Across languages, from the hunter-gatherer Tsimane’ people of the Amazon to students in Boston, warm colors are communicated more efficiently than cool colors. This cross-linguistic pattern reflects the color statistics of the world: Objects (what we talk about) are typically warm-colored, and backgrounds are cool-colored. Communicative needs also explain why the number of color terms varies across languages: Cultures vary in how useful color is. Industrialization, which creates objects distinguishable solely based on color, increases color usefulness.

Redesigned Online Colour Naming Experiment

Posted on 2018-03-01 - link

Colour naming on Mobiles, illustration by Valero Doval

Colour naming on Mobiles, illustration by Valero Doval

Let’s play a game, how many colours can you name?

Name your colours on your PC, mobile or pad at .

The redesigned online experiment designed to collect colour names in multiple languages with their corresponding colour ranges. You will be asked to name a series of colour samples and provide information about your cultural background and viewing conditions. Participation in this study is strictly anonymous and voluntary.

What is your score?

'Anthropology of Color' is now Open Access

Posted on 2018-02-12 - link

Book Cover

Book Cover

The field of color categorization has always been intrinsically multi- and inter-disciplinary, since its beginnings in the nineteenth century. The main contribution of this book is to foster a new level of integration among different approaches to the anthropological study of color. The editors have put great effort into bringing together research from anthropology, linguistics, psychology, semiotics, and a variety of other fields, by promoting the exploration of the different but interacting and complementary ways in which these various perspectives model the domain of color experience. By so doing, they significantly promote the emergence of a coherent field of the anthropology of color.

The book can be found here

NAMING THE COLORS Color names designation from the colorimetric values. The French GPEM/PV work revisited.

Posted on 2018-02-09 - link

Example of a cross section of the color space at a constant CIE lightness with French color names. Coordinates are u* and v* with red scales.

Example of a cross section of the color space at a constant CIE lightness with French color names. Coordinates are u* and v* with red scales.

A new colourful resource on our website. This publication describes a method for assigning a color name to an object whose colorimetric characteristics have been measured. This method concerns the French language and was the subject of a recently published book. The method is the result of an old work published by Afnor, the French standardization organization, work unfortunately obsolete by its colorimetric part. The publication describes the work that has been done for its modernization and to lead to an easy implementation. The text, by presenting some excerpts from the tables and graphs published in the French book, shows the interest of a simple and rigorous method of naming colors. This is a very important subject for which there are very few publications. This is indeed a subject that should interest a large number of users for whom only numerical information on color cannot be sufficient.

Visit Resource

How do people from different cultures associate colours with certain words?

Posted on 2017-12-19 - link

Ivar Jung

Ivar Jung

An exciting new comparative study between colour associations and 26 words in 10 different countries is conducted by our member Ivar Jung, Dept. of Design, Linnaeus University, Sweden.

The aim of this research is to investigate if there are distinctive patterns - similarities and differences - in how subjects from different cultures associate words with colours. The 24 words tested in this study are: warm, cold, sorrow, happiness, calm, upset, near, distant, young, old, feminine, masculine, fast, slow, strong, weak, false, true, cheap, expensive, friendly, dangerous, me, others, health and sickness.

The countries represented in this study are located in different parts of the world, with different cultures and religious traditions. From each country, there are two groups of subjects, one group is a general mix of people who are not working with colours in their professional life. Another group consists of students of art and design or other colour trained persons. It will be possible to compare the answers from these two groups separately.

Design students and laypersons are given 26 words in their native language. They are asked to assign each word to a colour from a chart with 27 selected colours from the NCS atlas. The results will be analyzed in terms of how coherent the answers are and potential patterns that emerge specific to the countries, and their cultural contexts. It should be also possible to examine if there are differences in the chosen colours related to the subjects’ sex, age, experience of colour and religion.

The results of this study will be presented at future AIC conferences. Please feel free to contact Ivar Jung if you are interested in contributing in his study.

Call & Dates | AIC LISBOA 2018

Posted on 2017-10-28 - link

An iconic symbol

An iconic symbol

On behalf of the International Colour Association (AIC), the AIC 2018 Organizing and Scientific Committees, would like to invite you to participate and submit an abstract on colour, related to the theme of Human Comfort, a key issue in our society.

More info: AIC LISBOA 2018

Our next meeting will take place at the Munsell 2018 in Boston! Call for poster papers is open...

Posted on 2017-10-28 - link

ISCC | AIC  Munsell Centennial Symposium

ISCC | AIC Munsell Centennial Symposium

Call for Poster Papers

ABSTRACT DEADLINE: December 15, 2017 NOTIFICATION: February 9, 2018 PUBLICATION DEADLINE: June 30, 2018

The Program Committee invites submissions of scientific poster papers that feature the history, evolution, state-of-the-art, and future directions for Munsell’s color system and systems inspired by Munsell as well as other approaches to solving color-related problems in science, art, industry and education.

Accepted papers may be presented at the symposium and are eligible for inclusion in a special issue of the journal Color Research and Application.

Poster submissions on topics that will enhance the themes of the invited presentations are especially encouraged.

More Info: Munsell 2018.

An online color naming experiment in Russian using Munsell color samples

Posted on 2017-10-18 - link

Location of centroids for the 12 Russian BCTs for females (filled circle) and males (filled square); a*b* plane (top) and L*a*b* (bottom) in CIELAB

Location of centroids for the 12 Russian BCTs for females (filled circle) and males (filled square); a*b* plane (top) and L*a*b* (bottom) in CIELAB

Research output from collaborative project between Galina V. Paramei (Co-Chair), Yulia A. Griber (member) and Dimitris Mylonas (Chair). The journal paper is published under Open Access policy.

An online color naming experiment in Russian using Munsell color samples.

Agenda for SGLC meeting at AIC 2017, Jeju, S. Korea

Posted on 2017-10-11 - link

Agenda SGLC meeting

Agenda SGLC meeting

Colour naming for colour design in Colour Design 2nd Ed

Posted on 2017-07-18 - link



Colour Design 2nd Edition Theories and Applications Editor: Janet Best


Colour Design: Theories and Applications, Second Edition, provides information on a broad spectrum of colour subjects written by seasoned industry professionals and academics. It is a multidisciplinary book that addresses the use of colour across a range of industries, with a particular focus on textile colouration.

Part One deals with the human visual system, colour perception and colour psychology, while Part Two focuses on the practical application of colour in design, including specifically in textiles and fashion. Part Three covers cultural and historical aspects of colour, as well as recent developments, addressing areas such as dyes and pigments, architecture, colour theory, virtual reality games, colour printing, website development, and sustainability. This revised, expanded, and updated edition reflects recent technological developments, and new industry priorities.

Bringing together the science of colouration and the more artistic elements of design, this book supports students, academics, and industry professionals in developing a deep knowledge of colour use. It will also be an important reference for those involved in textile dyeing, design and manufacture.

Key Features

• Provides a comprehensive review of the issues surrounding the use of color in textiles

• Discusses the application of color across a wide range of industries, supporting interdisciplinary knowledge and research

• Offers a revised, expanded, and updated look that reflects the rise of new technology and industry priorities


Textile dyers and colourists, academics interested in colour design and theory, and anyone who uses colour in their work

The abstract submission for AIC 2017 is now open.

Posted on 2016-12-22 - link

Abstract Submission Open

Abstract Submission Open

You can find more information and submit your abstract at

Color Language and Color Categorization

Posted on 2016-08-02 - link

Book Cover

Book Cover

This volume represents a unique collection of chapters on the way in which color is categorized and named in a number of languages. Although color research has been a topic of focus for researchers for decades, the contributions here show that many aspects of color language and categorization are as yet unexplored, and that current theories and methodologies which investigate color language are still evolving. Some core questions addressed here include: How is color conceptualized through language? What kind of linguistic tools do languages use to describe color? Which factors tend to bias color language? What methodologies could be used to understand human color categorization and language better? How do color vocabularies evolve? How does context impact the color cognition?

The chapters collected here adopt different theoretical and methodological approaches in describing new empirical research on how the concept of color is represented in a variety of different languages. Researchers in linguistics, psychology, and cognitive science present a set of new explorations and challenges in the area of color language. The book promotes several methodological and disciplinary dimensions to color studies. The color category is given an in-depth and broad-based examination, so a reader interested in color conceptualization for itself will be able to form a solid vision of the subject. More Info.

Call for papers : AIC 2017 JEJU 13th Congress

Posted on 2016-07-29 - link

call for papers

call for papers

More info

14-16 Sep 2016 – 4th Progress in Colour Studies Conference (PICS 2016) University College London, UK

Posted on 2016-06-28 - link

PICS 2016 at University College London

PICS 2016 at University College London

The aim of the conference is to provide a multidisciplinary forum for discussion of recent and ongoing research, presented so as to be accessible to scholars in other disciplines. Including but not limited to the following topics: linguistics, psycholinguistics, vision, perception, cognition, memory, design, fashion, architecture, art, history, heritage, culture, imaging, computation, analysis, modeling, illumination, optics, photography, technology, conservation, chemistry, materials, surface.

The programme for Progress in Colour Studies 2016 is now available here. Also - a reminder that early bird registration runs until 31/7.

Call for nominations for a Member of the AIC Executive Committee

Posted on 2016-06-19 - link

cherry picking by Julie Falk

cherry picking by Julie Falk

Dear SGLC members,

You can find below a call for nominations for a Member of the AIC Executive Committee from the AIC Secretary/Treasurer, Lindsay MacDonald.

We look forward to receiving your nominations.

Best Wishes,

Dimitris Mylonas

Chair Study Group on the Language of Colour

Dear AIC Member Countries,

I am sorry to announce that for personal reasons Professor Nancy Kwallek has resigned from her position as an Ordinary Member of the AIC Executive Committee. Under Article 7 of the AIC Statutes, the EC has decided to hold a by-election to fill the vacancy for the remainder of the period until the next election (at the Congress in October 2017). We are therefore calling for nominations by Friday 29th July 2016. In the event of two or more nominations being received, you will then be asked to vote during August.

Please note that, again under Article 7 of the Statutes (2013), “The membership of the Executive Committee should be such that no regular member is represented by more than one person. The exception to this rule is the Past President.” Hence the new member cannot represent Australia, Taiwan, Great Britain, Portugal, Argentina or Korea. The AIC welcomes diversity and representation from all parts of the world.

To nominate someone for this position, please provide for the candidate: - a brief biography emphasising colour-related activity - a portrait photograph - a supporting letter signed by the Chairman of the committee of the member society

Please think carefully about this opportunity. We will welcome candidates who are active in any field of colour and who are interested to join us in the leadership of AIC.

Yours sincerely,


Lindsay MacDonald PhD

AIC Secretary/Treasurer

Call for papers: International Scientific Conference COLOUR-CULTURE-SCIENCE in Poland

Posted on 2016-04-15 - link

 Horse and carriage  in Kraków by Mike Allyn

Horse and carriage in Kraków by Mike Allyn

Colour-Culture-Science , 3rd International Scientific Conference in the cycle Colour Day, 23-24 November 2016, Cracow, Poland. Organized by: Polish Colour Association, Jan Matejko Academy of Fine Arts in Cracow

Call for Papers open Abstract Submission Deadline 30 April 2016 Committee: Dr Bożena Groborz, Dr Agata Kwiatkowska-Lubańska (ECD member), Dr inż. arch. Justyna Tarajko-Kowalska (ECD member)

more info

Comunicação com Cores (trans. Communication with colours) by Paula Csillag

Posted on 2016-04-03 - link

The goal of this book is to deepen the understanding of chromatic communication elements that tend to be generalized to human beings with normal eyesight. The term generalized is used in the sense of visual perception elements that work in a similar way to human beings, due to physiological factors. This book was organized according to visual perception Model SENS ORG INT’s structure. This model was devised by the author, presented in the conference and awarded in the 2007 Book of Selected Readings of the North American Association International Visual Literacy Association, with the Editor’s Choice Award, as the best paper presented and submitted. With such a framework, now applied to color, it may be possible to identify parameters for the creation and analysis of images, regarding the efficiency of its communication with colors. Principles here derived may be useful for application in design, advertising, architecture, movies, photography, fashion, packaging and any area that deals with visual communication.

More info.

Thinking Colours - Perception, Translation and Representation

Posted on 2016-03-26 - link

The essays collected into this volume are organized into five interrelated sections exploring discourse on the interaction between sensation, perceptions of colour and the various forms of their cultural representation. The contributors analyse aspects related to colour ‘labelling’, its mediation and representation, consider traditional and new approaches to colour, and explore the cultural productivity of colour across different fields. Colour is presented within a conceptual framework that fosters alliances between the humanities and the social and natural sciences.

Part I is dedicated to studying colour from a cognitive perspective, while Part II contains essays dealing with issues surrounding the translation of colour lexicons and covers topics such as the Chinese qing macro-colour category and colour metonymy in advertising.

The papers grouped together in Part III explore the negotiation that occurs between colours and literature in a masterpiece of Chinese literary criticism Wenxin Diaolong (The Literary Mind and the Carving of Dragons) by Liu Xie, colour metaphors in Homeric epics, and finally the interpretation of colour in modern Portuguese youth novels. This is followed by Part IV, which examines the use of colour in the visual arts. The studies in Part V emphasize the usage of colour and colour preferences within different cultural and social environments, including peculiarities in design and architecture and the symbolism of colour in tourism.

Many of the questions addressed throughout this volume stem from the dialogic interaction among the contributors representing various different fields of research. Two particular aspects are present throughout the volume and will have a profound effect on the reader, namely that the categorization and the interpretation of colour are a priori emotional and vary from culture to culture. Colour names have their own “cultural memory” and references; they can either “remember” or “forget” some notions relevant to the speakers’ cultural tradition. Second, as a cultural puzzle, colour produces very strong associative and symbolic meanings, thus ensuring it remains a strong semiotic resource and a powerful instrument for conveying and communicating meaning. More info.

Augmenting Basic Colour Terms in English (2016) by Dimitris Mylonas & Lindsay MacDonald

Posted on 2016-02-05 - link

Turquoise2Lilac by D. Mylonas

Turquoise2Lilac by D. Mylonas


In an unconstrained colour naming experiment conducted over the web, 330 participants named 600 colour samples in English. The 30 most frequent monolexemic colour terms were analyzed with regards to frequency, consensus among genders, response times, consistency of use, denotative volume in the Munsell and OSA colour spaces and inter-experimental agreement. Each of these measures served for ranking colour term salience; rankings were then combined to give a composite index of basicness. The results support the extension of English inventory from the 11 basic colour terms of Berlin and Kay to 13 terms by the addition of lilac and turquoise. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Col Res Appl, 41, 32–42, 2016 More info.

Color names, stimulus color, and their subjective links (2016) by Liliana Albertazzi & Osvaldo Da Pos (member of SGLC)

Posted on 2016-01-27 - link

Hand made by  Nicola Romagna

Hand made by Nicola Romagna


The aim of the research reported by this study was on the one hand to identify what colors were associated with particular words in relation to a specific language (Italian), by portraying them in color stimuli on the screen of a monitor; and on the other hand to verify whether some words of that language denoted colors that were either particularly well defined or confused with others. In an experiment using special software, the subjects were asked to produce colors directly, instead of choosing among a number of colors presented on the screen. The results showed that (i) it is possible to identify the color-stimuli to which the terms of a language refer; that (ii) the “best” colors Giallo (Yellow), Rosso (Red), Blu (Blue), and Verde (Green) which the subjects were requested to produce were very similar to the corresponding unique hues; that (iii) among the mixed hues there were perceptually intermediate colors, that is, ones exactly midway between two consecutive unique colors: Arancione (Orange) and Viola (bluish Purple); that (iv) Turquoise and Lime were clearly positioned in the mental space of color of the participants; and that (v) for Italian speakers some hues coincide: Azzurro (Azure) and Celeste (Cerulean); Arancione (Orange), RossoGiallo (RedYellow) and Carota (Carrot); Lime and GialloVerde (YellowGreen), so that their color terms can be considered synonyms. Our most interesting finding, however, is that for Italian speakers these four mixed colors with their specific names (Lime, Turchese (Turquoise), Viola (bluish Purple) and Arancione (Orange) fall perceptually in the middle of each of the four quadrants formed in the hue circle by the four unique hues. The resulting circle is therefore characterized by eight colors of which four are unique and four are intermediate mixed. It would be advisable to repeat the study cross-culturally to test for possible similarities and differences in color meanings with speakers of different languages. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Col Res Appl, 2016.

Annual Report Preparation

Posted on 2016-01-07 - link

Image by Karsten Schmidt

Image by Karsten Schmidt

We are in preparation of our annual report and we want to hear about your activities in 2015 related to our study group accompanied by a colourful picture by 1st March 2016. Considering our limited single page space see previous report pg 43 we will try to include the most appropriate entries but we have always more space on our website.

AIC2016 Interim Meeting

Posted on 2015-12-23 - link

 "La Busqueda" (The Search) en la Municipalidad de Vitacura by Jimmy Baikovicius

"La Busqueda" (The Search) en la Municipalidad de Vitacura by Jimmy Baikovicius

The Chilean Association of Colour and the AIC2016 Organizing Committee, are pleased to invite you to participate in the AIC2016 Interim Meeting, to be held in Santiago, Chile - October 18th - 21st, 2016.

The theme of the conference is ‘Color in Urban Life: Images, Objects and Spaces’. The aim of AIC2016 is to share experiences regarding the use of color in images, objects and space, from different perspectives and disciplines, thus contributing to a better user experience, improving usability, and also to improve life quality in our cities.

Abstract Submission Deadline: January 18th, 2016 To submit your extended abstract please visit:

We hope to see you next year in Santiago!

Color naming in Italian language (2015) by G. Paggetti, G. Menega and G. Paramei

Posted on 2015-12-07 - link

Blue wall at Burano by Riccardo Ce

Blue wall at Burano by Riccardo Ce


The present study investigated Italian basic color terms (BCTs). It is an extension of our previous work that explored Italian basic color categories (BCCs) using a constrained color-naming method, with 11 Italian BCTs allowed, including blu for naming the BLUE area. Since a latter outcome indicated a categorization bias, here monolexemic color-naming method was employed, enabling also use of azzurro, deeply entrenched Italian term that designates light blue. In Experiment 1, colors (N = 367), sampling the Munsell Mercator projection, were presented on a CRT; color names and reaction times of vocalization onset were recorded. Naming consistency and consensus were estimated. Consistency was obtained for 12 CTs, including the two blue terms; consensus was found for 11 CTs, excluding rosso “red.” For each consensus category, color with the shortest response time was considered focal. In Experiment 2, consensus stimuli (N = 72) were presented; on each trial, observers indicated the focal color (“best example”) in an array of colors comprising a consensus category. For each of the 12 Italian CCs, centroid was calculated and focal color (two measures) estimated. Compared to English color terms, two outcomes are specific to Italian color naming: (i) naming of the RED-PURPLE area is highly refined, with consistent use of emergent non-BCTs; (ii) azzurro and blu both perform as BCTs dividing the BLUE area along the lightness dimension. The findings are considered in the framework of the weak relativity hypothesis. Historico-linguistic, environmental, and pragmatic communication factors are discussed that conceivably have driven the extension of the BCT inventory in Italian. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Col Res Appl, 2015

Full article

The English Colour Language: A Colour Word Compendium

Posted on 2015-08-20 - link

We are delighted to announce the first resource on our new website: “The English Language, a Colour Word Compendium” by our long term member John B Hutchings. Available now for the first time to members of our study group.

Visit Resource

Feel free to contact us if you wish to share resources related to all colour languages of the world (colour dictionaries, compendiums, colour naming databases etc).

Meeting agenda: Study Group on The Language of Colour (SGLC)

Posted on 2015-05-15 - link

Wednesday, 20 May 2015, 17:30 - 19:00
Room C, Ochanomizu sola city Conference Center, Tokyo, Japan

  1. Welcome & Introductions
  2. Apologies
  3. Purpose of the Study Group
  4. New Online Presence
  5. Short Oral Presentations
    • Norifumi Kunimoto
      Changes of Color Names and Coloring Materials in Japan
    • Pichayada Katemake
      Comparison among Three Methods for Thai Colour Naming
    • Dimitris Mylonas
      Colour communication within and across languages
  6. Open Discussion
    The future of the Study Group on The Language of Colour
  7. Delegations
  8. Next Meeting
    AIC Color 2017, 13th Congress
    16-20 October 2017, in Jeju Island, Korea

Open Invitation

Posted on 2015-02-12 - link

We are in the process of redefining the scope of the study group you are invited to come up with new ideas to improve our existing purpose:

“The purpose of this study group (LC) is to discuss and share information on the studies about the fields such as linguistics, semiotics, cognitive science and other topics including color naming and categorisation, colored synaesthesia, semantic studies on color, colour grammar and syntax which are key to this study group.”

We also welcome suggestions on activities that SGLC can engage with and support.

To join the conversation, you have to register as a member in the provided form. The dialogue will start in group emails and will be elaborated at the AIC 2015 meeting in Tokyo.

New Chairman and Co-Chairwoman

Posted on 2015-02-11 - link

Dimitris Mylonas, Chairman and Galina Paramei, Co-Chairwoman

Dimitris Mylonas, Chairman and Galina Paramei, Co-Chairwoman

Dimitris Mylonas has been appointed as the new Chairman of the Study Group Language of Colour of the International Colour Association. He replaces Prof Jinsook Lee who is stepping down to take over the responsibilities of Chair of the Organising Committee of the AIC 2017 Congress in Korea. Prof Galina Paramei has been named as the new Co-Chairwoman of the study group.

“It has been a pleasure being members of the group under her Chairmanship and we thank her and Prof Paul Green Armytage for their efforts and wish every success in their future undertakings.”

Dimitris Mylonas and Galina Paramei bring extensive research expertise in the cognitive aspects of colour and administration skills of public engagement events to Study Group Language of Colour. Read more

“We are delighted to be joining the Study Group Language of Colour. Our vision is to develop and maintain an international interdisciplinary network of researchers with an interest in the relationship between colour and language and to engage the public with the current progress in this area of research. We look forward in contributing to the advancement of the International Colour Association.”

Welcome to our new website

Posted on 2015-02-10 - link

Color Impact image by James zhan -

Color Impact image by James zhan -

We are delighted to introduce you to our new website that we feel better reflects our study group today.

We hope you will enjoy surfing on our pages and that the improved navigation will allow you to find the information you need more quickly and easily.

This is where we plan to share our thoughts and resources on the current developments of the colour and language related areas of research. You can register as a member using the provided form.

We will continue updating the website with useful information for our members and the general public and and adding new functionalities along the way.

Please contact us to let us know what you think of our new website - all comments and feedback are welcome.


Members of the Language of Color study group can see each others full contact details. They also get priviledged access to publication and data sets.

It's free, get in touch.

Like us on Facebook
Visit AIC International Color Association