Clock Tower

The building at number one Main Street in Brooklyn, New York is crowned by an impressive clock tower. As the highest part of the building, the tower is perfectly square with each of its four sides housing a gigantic clock pointing to one of the four cardinal directions on the compass. During the day, its windows illuminate the space within; at night the interior space illuminates the clock faces continuously acknowledging the progression of time. Backed with clear glass, the clock faces allow for a direct exchange of light, projecting a view onto four different New York neighborhoods.

From within the clock tower, Lutter recorded these four vistas with the camera obscura. The well-calibrated slowness of her exposures allowed Lutter to achieve a literal imprint of time as the large minute and hour hands circulating the clock faces left traces of their slow progression throughout the image plane. In this way, Lutter's images give evidence to the very time based nature of photography and the beauty and diversity of New York and its many boroughs.