MoMA
Mario Merz

Untitled (A Real Sum Is a Sum of People)

1972
Not on view
Medium
Gelatin silver prints, neon tubing, transformer, and wire
Dimensions
Overall 24" x 16' 7 1/4" x 5 1/8" (60.9 x 506 x 13 cm)
Credit
Mrs. Armand P. Bartos Fund
Object number
129.1974.a-w
Copyright
© 2015/ Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / SIAE, Rome

This sequence of photographs depicts an ever-increasing number of people sitting in a restaurant, numbered in neon above. These numbers follow the Fibonacci series, a system of growth (often seen in nature) that perpetuates itself by adding the two previous elements to arrive at the next. Merz began using the series in 1970. He has said, "I did not understand why a work of art had to be a certain length when it could be infinite. . . . In the Fibonacci series, there are no spatial limitations because space becomes infinite—not abstract infinity, but biological infinity."

Gallery label from 2008
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Image permissions

In order to effectively service requests for images, The Museum of Modern Art entrusts the licensing of images of works of art in its collections to the agencies Scala Archives and Art Resource. As MoMA’s representatives, these agencies supply high-resolution digital image files provided to them directly by the Museum's imaging studios.

All requests to reproduce works of art from MoMA's collection within North America (Canada, U.S., Mexico) should be addressed directly to Art Resource at 536 Broadway, New York, New York 10012. Telephone (212) 505-8700; fax (212) 505-2053; requests@artres.com; artres.com. Requests from all other geographical locations should be addressed directly to Scala Group S.p.A., 62, via Chiantigiana, 50012 Bagno a Ripoli/Firenze, Italy. Telephone 39 055 6233 200; fax 39 055 641124; firenze@scalarchives.com; scalarchives.com.

Requests for permission to reprint text from MoMA publications should be addressed to text_permissions@moma.org.

Related links:
Outside North America: Scala Archives
North America: Art Resource