Clock by Christiaan Postma


Milan 08: Clock by Christiaan Postma consists of more than 150 synchronised clock mechanisms, which rotate metal bars that briefly align to spell the appropriate time (click to play the movie above to see how it works).


Postma showed the project at Spazio Rossana Orlandi.


"The starting point with this project was a personal study about form and time," says Postma. "I put together more than 150 individual clockworks and made them work together to become one clock. I show the progress of time by letting the numbers be written in words by the clockworks. Reading clockwise, the time being is visible through a word and readable by the completeness of the word, 12 words from 'one' to 'twelve'.


"The word “three” completely appears when it’s exactly 3 o’clock and will then transform again as time passes. The word “four” begins to appear and at exactly 4 o’clock the word “four” is clearly visible. The word “three” is by then totally vanished and no longer readable."

The clock measures 140 x 140 cm.

Posted on Monday April 28th 2008 at 2:05 pm by . Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • Bob

    so the time between hours is more about guessing than reading actual time….good for someone who doesnt treat punctuality too seriously;)
    anyway, good idea but needs to be developed a bit more

  • I wonder if it switches time for daylight savings automagically… otherwise it’s a pain in the ass…

  • sam

    i like.
    though i wish the numbers were a little neater when aligned.

  • Bob 2

    This isn’t a wrist watch Bob, its a clock. At least one will have an excuse for their lateness.

  • tom


    it makes me realise even more how time (literally) is so precious.

    i like the idea that hours are important, seconds are just a fragment of it; like the “white fragments” that together compose the word (hour)…
    lots of narrative on this clock.

    love it.

  • amsam

    Total genius.

  • pat


    A poetic, meditative, inventive joy.

    My compliments to you, Mr. Postma

  • aut

    i think your time measurement would be more detailed if you just look out of the window and guess it….
    something that doesn´t really work can not be design!!

  • tommi

    juz FUN …. daz why they dont care whether it works or not

  • mmm yar

    i want one.

  • Desiree

    totally incredible! this must have been such a complicated, time consuming project!

  • tylerpole

    lol :P

  • Amanda

    I LOVE it! I can’t imagine how long it would have taken to place all the lines for an aesthetically pleasing look at all times…………. bravo! :) And – for the naysayers – I can very easily tell what time this says within 15 minutes, which is close enough for me…….. and I bet, with time, I could get to within at least 5 minutes, if not even more precise…… you can tell by the shape of the words next to each other…….. anyway, I’m quite SURE many people have another clock they may even CARRY with them for more accuracy if needed……… such as on a cell phone? Relax! Have some fun, people!

  • mvb

    Amazing! I think it is the best deconstructivist clock I have ever seen! Time, machine and shape (hands) are like a metaphor of our dynamical and ephemeral life…

  • Sam

    I think that the idea is really brilliant. But I can tell that for those who do not like the idea of punctuality,they may end up pulling out their hair every now and then when they realise that the letters do not procrastinate!

    Brilliant Idea :D

  • Myth

    One suggestion for reading the actual time, only a minute hour may be put to the middle. It will not be recognized easily for those who just saw it, but those who know hoa it works may read the time.

  • Okay, how much?!

  • nuna

    great!!!!! ı love different clocks.I live ın do ı arrive, this clock?

  • Zack


  • Renan

    Simply Amazing, congratulations for the great work.