respectively, Peter Weibel. Art as an Act of Cognition
A photomontage of three stripes, showing the portrait of Peter Weibel young and old.
National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (MMCA), Seoul, Südkorea
Fri, February 03, 2023 – Sun, May 14, 2023

The exhibition »respectively, Peter Weibel. Art as an Act of Cognition« provides an insight into the oeuvre of the internationally significant media and concept artist Peter Weibel (*1944), whose achievements as an artist, curator and theoretical thinker have had a crucial influence on the development of the media arts since the 1960s.

Eleven thematic sections present a selection of Peter Weibel's most important works, ranging from actions and performances, photography, the examination of language, writing and poetry, over films and videos, up to expanded cinema and computer-based installations. 

In a great variety of media and practices, Peter Weibel repeatedly explores themes such as the mechanisms of perception and thought, the intrinsic world of the apparatus, the crisis of representation, and the operating system of art, and also the relationship between art, politics, and economics. His seminal works, which are today icons of media art, anticipated decisive developments in the art of the late twentieth and twenty-first centuries – and radically challenged conventional notions of art. Under the conditions of the nascent age of media, since the 1960s Weibel has created an oeuvre that dares to conceive artistic creativity as an open field of action.

Beginning in 1964, Weibel developed an artistic language based on his intensive engagement with language theory, mathematics, and logical philosophy, which initially led him from visual poetry and experimental literature to performance and the deconstruction of cinematic representation. Already in his early work, Peter Weibel explored the entire spectrum of the apparatus-based arts and posed the complex question of the ontological difference between representation and reality.

From 1966, he applied participatory and interactive practices in his works, which in 1969 led to closed-circuit video installations, and in the 1980s to the first interactive computer installations, with which he thematized the relationship between media and the construction of reality. As a political artist, in his work Weibel develops utopian visions of social and individual freedom on the basis of technical innovations.

Peter Weibel is a nomad travelling between art and science who to this day consistently pursues his ways of looking at problems in various materials, forms, and techniques. With logical stringency, he as a constructor of worlds has created an artistic oeuvre that leads from critique of perception to critique of language and media to critique of reality. With his “faith in the healing power of logical treatment” (Peter Sloterdijk), the curator, theorist and above all artist Peter Weibel provides us with the tools to be prepared against any form of simplifying explanatory models of the world. Art with Peter Weibel is a process of cognition.

The exhibition »respectively, Peter Weibel. Art as an Act of Cognition« at the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Korea (MMCA) is realized in collaboration with the ZKM | Center for Art and Media Karlsruhe (Germany), and based on the exhibition »respectively, Peter Weibel«, which was presented at ZKM in 2019 / 2020, on the occasion of Peter Weibel’s 75th birthday. Peter Weibel has been artistic and scientific chairman of the ZKM since 1999.

Exhibitions team

Director of the MMCA
YOUN Bummo

Acting Chief Curator
SONG Sujong

Head of Exhibition Departement 1
Lui Jienne

Senior Curator
Park Soojin

Curated by
Hong Leeji (MMCA)
Clare Runge (ZKM)
Philipp Ziegler (ZKM)

Curatorial Assistant
Sojung Jang

Exhibition Design
KIM Yong-ju

Graphic Design
Lee Gunjung

Exhibition Construction
Yun Haeri

Installation and Technical Coordination
Lee Kyoungmi (MMCA)
Joo Changha (MMCA)
E Joung Seo (MMCA)
Christian Lölkes (ZKM)
Martin Häberle (ZKM)

Organized by

In cooperation with