Jan Dibbets

Dutch, born 1941

Shadows in the Sperone Gallery

© Jan Dibbets / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / DACS, London

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Shadows in the Sperone Gallery, 1971

Artwork Details


black-and-white photographs and pencil mounted on paper


overall: 27 1/2 x 39 3/8 inches (69.8 x 100 cm)

Collection Buffalo AKG Art Museum


The Panza Collection and by exchange: George B. and Jenny R. Mathews Fund, Bequest of Arthur B. Michael, Albert H. Tracy Fund and Bequest of John Mortimer Schiff, 2015

Accession ID


The series of photographs comprising Shadows in the Sperone Gallery records sunlight passing through the windows of the Sperone Gallery in Turin, Italy, over the course of the day on March 10, 1971. As captured by Jan Dibbets’s stationary camera, the amount of light passing through the window in each successive image increases and the shadow of the window grows longer, reflecting the planet’s rotation around the sun. Although the task Dibbets set for himself was extremely simple, his investigation leads to a reflection on the complexity of actually representing the human experience of time’s passing.

Label from Looking at Tomorrow: Light and Language from The Panza Collection, 1967–1990, October 24, 2015–February 7, 2016