International exhibitions

International 2010 Archives

Peter Regli, Reality Hacking
CAN, Neuchâtel (Switzerland)

17.04 - 30.05.2010

04.06- 15.08.2010


07.09 - 25.11.2012

Précédent Suivant


Press release

The artistic creations of Peter Regli, brought together under the label Reality Hacking (, have for a long time invested the most improbable places, mostly outside and in a more or less spontaneous fashion. In this way he carefully avoided art spaces and their knowledgeable audience, probably to better benefit from a greater freedom in the distortion, perception and interpretation of a reality he offers to an unprepared audience. By doing this since 1995Peter Regli has become his own institution.

However, for a few years now, Regli also shows in museums and art centers (MAC, Santiago de Chile, 2006; Helmhaus, Zurich, 2007, etc). If the audience changes, he still manages to preserve an effect of surprise and subversion by playing with the rules of art.The project he is proposing at the CAN constructs itself somewhat around the hacking of history and art history.



Peter Regli, Reality Hacking, CAN, Neuchâtel

© ArtCatalyse International / Marika Prévosto 2012. All Rights Reserved

Exhibition 17 April - 30 May 2010. CAN / Centre d'art de Neuchâtel, 37 rue des Moulins - 2000 Neuchâtel. Tel.: +41 (0)3 27 24 01 60. Open Wednesday - Sunday Wednesday - Sunday 2pm - 6pm, Thursday till 18pm.

Peter Regli, Reality Hacking Archives, 2008

Peter Regli, Reality Hacking Archives, 2008


As we know, the geographer Martin Waldseemüller attributed the first name of the Italian navigator and explorer Amerigo Vespucci, to both American continents in 1507. This designation is actually an error seeing as how Columbus was the first European to walk on South American soil, which should therefore be named Columbia (as long as we do not take into account the hundreds of thousands of indigenes). Subsequently, many historians have even considered Vespucci as a usurper (a hacker) putting in doubt the historic reality of his travels. Vespucci however did go, guided by the Big Dipper, which showed him the north, as it did all navigators. The installation by Regli at the CAN offers, in sorts, that a frozen image is off from Vespucci’s travels. Here the artist has an ironic view of the rhetoric given by art centers that self-define themselves as spaces of great liberty and as risk-takers. In comparison to the great outdoors and the dangers that surrounded the maritime expeditions of the fifteenth century, these liberties and risks seem pale.

The big dipper points to the north, and if Vespucci went to South America, it also symbolizes the magnetism twentieth century North American art has on European artists. Thus the recovery and diversion of the dripping technique by Regli at the CAN constitutes a type of homage to (and pirating of) Jackson Pollock, “star” of American art. Pollock had also created a canvas titled Reflection of the Big Dipper. We could also interpret this installation as a reference to Splash Pieces by Richard Serra, or even as a type of interior Land Art.

Finally, the second definition of the expression Big Dipper would be the roller coaster, the fair ride, which ironically reduces art to simple entertainment, even thou the ride is hair-raising.

The actual content of this installation will not be disclosed until the opening so as to preserve the effect of surprise and of discovery of this new reglian continent.

Curator : Arthur de Pury

Peter Regli, Reality Hacking n°235, Karoo, South Africa, 2006

Peter Regli, Reality Hacking n°235, Karoo, South Africa, 2006