About Us

Drawing is taking a line for a walk
(Paul Klee)



Each person visualizes a different time-span: the now, the day, the week or the whole life

Years ago I started to ask friends, students, and acquaintances to answer the question “How do you see the passage of Time?” with a simple sketch. The resulting drawings are collected in the Icatime Gallery.

The very first idea was actually about numbers, and it happened while changing some currency:  I noticed that a person pointed to the right with her hand while saying “100”. When asked why, she answered that it was “obvious, that at 100 numbers take a turn”. So I started to wonder: how do people “see” the sequence of numbers 1 to 10?  Some people see a linear sequence going left to right. Others see 1 to 10 like stars in the sky, without any sequential order. Or rising from the ground to eye-level. A whole new set of horizons was unfolding.

The shift to envisioning time seemed only natural. Surprisingly, from the very beginning, most people I asked drew something immediately and without giving it much thought. As if they had always had a crystal clear shape of time in mind although, in most cases, they had never thought about it before. Also, instead of an expected collection of lines and circles, individual perception of time proved to range from minimalist abstractions to complex symbolic forms.

Another interesting outcome is the time-span taken into consideration: one person can visualize the now, the day, the week or the whole life. Most students and working people tend to focus on the seven days of the week.

Please join us in drafting a collective image of Time. Yes, you might protest that you cannot draw, but anybody can take a line for a walk.

Camilla Torna



Reflections on Time

Physics World, Fred Swist | The Arche Time conference was completely unlike most meetings attended by physicists. Organized by conceptual artist Olga Ast, the June 2009 event brought together than 70 people from a wide range of backgrounds, including artists,...

Le site du jour: le Temps passe…

Liberation, Astrid Girardeau | Depuis le milieu des années 90, Camilla Torna demande à ses amis et rencontres de dessiner comment ils voient le passage du temps. Aujourd’hui, cette graphiste florentine, exilée à New York, a prolongé l’idée sur Internet avec le projet...

Così si disegna il tempo che passa

Corriere della Sera, Paolo Fallai | Camilla Torna raccoglie su Internet la «visualizzazione della vita quotidiana»: schizzi, tratti a matita, elaborazioni più complesse. Avete un’idea di come si possa visualizzare il tempo che passa? Riuscite a vedere un segno, una...



ICATIME is also a participatory design tool motivating collective visual reflection. The following example is a workshop held together with organizational development counselor StudioHR – where teams of professionals created collective images of time.


Archetime NYC

The project ICATIME, previously called Visualizing Time, participated with a video to the first Archetime interdisciplinary conference and exhibition in New York in 2009. From the exhibition catalogue Infinite Instances, read the Visualizing Time chapter as PDF or just flip through it below.



What does your Time look like?