Augustin Rebetez

Augustin Rebetez

Room 1

Augustin Rebetez & Friends





Swiss artist Augustin Rebetez is not unknown to Montreal audiences. Many may have seen his work during the 12th edition of the Mois de la Photo à Montréal in 2011, where his photographs and videos were presented in a rather subdued context. Factory behind your brain uses the opposite approach. Here the artist shatters the white cube of the gallery, maximising every inch of space to present his wild and teeming universe.

Factory behind your brain is everything that hides in our head: projects, ideas, etc., but mostly things that hide inside the head of the artist and his accomplices. Rebetez does not present his photographs, paintings, and videos alone. He works in close collaboration with Giona Bierens de Haan, who constructed the installation from recycled materials, and Adil Coralic and Louis Jucker, who act as his installation assistants and official exhibition collaborators, as well as fellow artists who will perform during the vernissage. The opening event is in fact seen as a big party where Rebetez and his colleagues push the multidisciplinary aspect of their work even further. Within the exhibition, as well as in performance, Rebetez’s work is the central core onto which other experts and worlds are grafted. His creative factory makes use of several mediums that reveal the complexity of his universe. In a recent monograph on the artist’s work, he explains how this amalgamation of approaches works within his practice: “I like this mix. It resembles me. I want to touch people, I want them to encounter my work the way they would go see a show. I like to spin a lot of webs and offer different choices to the audience. My work can be funny, violent or touching, just like life. I like to imagine the exhibition is like a journey, a trip through a world that I have staged. I want to inspire viewers, and continue to amaze myself1.” At CLARK, viewers will experience an immersive space, conceived and constructed on site by the artist and his collaborators from materials found in surrounding areas, with a few pieces brought over from Switzerland. The result is a DIY, low-tech universe, a little magical theatre.

It seems fitting that Augustin Rebetez’s artistic practice is an invitation to enter a unique world where drawings, photographs, animations and installation are combined to create an inviting experience for viewers. In this world of wonder, the work of this Swiss artist is a celebration of life.

- Manon Tourigny / traduction Jo-Anne Balcaen

1. Nathalie Herschdorfer, Augustin Rebetez, Lucerne, Pro Helvetia, Swiss Arts Council, Cahiers d’artistes series, 2013, n. p.


Augustin Rebetez was born in Switzerland, in 1986. Trained as a photographer, he also uses stop-motion video, painting, writing, and installations to shape his artistic universe. Since 2009, he has regularly shown his work in Switzerland and abroad, alternating between solo exhibitions and collaborative projects. He often teams up with other artists, his travel companions from the fringes of photography. His pictures evoke a surprising maelstrom of delicate darkness, spontaneous poetry, and biting humour. They pulsate with rawness and wonder, with stunning and refreshing freedom. Augustin Rebetez was awarded the Photo Folio Review by the Rencontres d'Arles 2010, the Swiss Photo Award in 2012, and the Vevey International Photo Award 2013-2014. In 2014, his work was shown at the Biennale of Sydney.

Augustin Rebetez would like to thank Giona Bierens de Haan, Louis Jucker, Laurent Güdel and Adil Coralic for their participation to this exhibition, as well as  Yann Pocreau, Roxanne Arsenault, Corine Lemieux and Manon Tourigny for their implication in this project. Special mention to Marie-Claude Landry. The artist and his collaborators attendance was made possible with the support of Pro Helvetia, Swiss Arts Council.