Marcel Hörler


"My curatorial and cultural mediation practice is a social practice. Thus creating social spaces is a key element in my projects. I have a penchant for collaborative, discursive as well as site-specific ways of working and an urge for friction and resistance, which I provoke through punctual conflicts."

"I was born in Herisau in 1988 and grew up as a son of a florist, housewife and truck driver in Stein, Appenzell. After my Bachelor in Social Work with a specialisation in Socioculture at the Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts and The Hague University in 2017, several years of professional experience in various social work fields, I completed a Master of Art in Art Education Curatorial Studies at the Zurich University of the Arts in 2021."

Marcel Hörler lives and works in Zurich and Lichtensteig.



The exhibition Passagen was dedicated to transitions as constant companions of people. It took place from September 10 to October 2, 2021 in the church St. Jakob in Zurich. The exhibition focused on the question of how transitions can be coped, working with photography, storytelling and arrangements of personal things. The sacral building functioned as an exhibition and reflection space, as a sound body and as a place of critical questioning. The basis for Passagen was formed by several meetings of the eight protagonists Beat Schwab, Chaowei Arakawa, Emanuel Hohl, Edwin Arsenio Ramirez Garcia, Heidi Stamm, Maria Hardt, Noah Di Bettschen and Yeter Tayet, as well as individual sound recordings, which came together in an expansive audio installation. The idea and concept were developed by Marcel Hörler and photographer Sabina Bösch, following an invitation from About Us! and the Reformed Church of Zurich. In addition, the following people were involved in the project: Julian Zehnder (audio), Maria Muster (textile), Maria Peskina (graphic design), neo seefried (text), Gilles Smrkovsky (editing). Part of the program was also an audience discussion, a sound performance between Kay Zhang, Nuriia Khasenova, Léo Collin (KIT) and Sacha Rüegg and a performance by Elischa Heller.

passagen 1

Passagen Vernissage. Photo: Lea Huser

passagen 2

Passagen Vernissage. Photo: Lea Huser

passagen 3

Performance Kay Zhang, Léo Collin, Nuriia Khasenova (KIT) & Sacha Rüegg. Photo: Lea Huser

passagen 4

Protagonistin Chaowei Arakawa. Photo: Sabina Bösch

passagen 5

Performance Kay Zhang, Léo Collin, Nuriia Khasenova (KIT) & Sacha Rüegg. Photo: Lea Huser

passagen 6

Protagonist Noah Di Bettschen. Photo: Sabina Bösch

passagen 7

Performance Elischa Heller. Photo: Mischa Schlegel

passagen 8

Objekt Emanuel Hohl. Photo: Sabina Bösch

passagen 9

Performance Elischa Heller. Photo: Mischa Schlegel

Performing Soil

Performing Soil was developed by the artists Silke kleine Kalvelage and Jan Georg Glöckner, together with the curator/cultural mediator Marcel Hörler. In April, May and June 2021 they collaborators Lisa Lee Benjamin, Marisa Meyer, Xaver Ammann, Kay Zhang, Brigham Baker, Titilayo Adebayo, Reut Nahum und Rosa Zettl from the fields of organic farming, textile design, music, visual arts, performance and dance to three sessions at Vogelherd, a nature reserve in Lichtensteig, St. Gallen. The different aspects of the earth, such as cross-species collaborations, world-building, earth as filter/archive/life-base are links between the collaborators and at the same time a basis for discussion. Current science methods assume that projects can be scaled. That means that an experiment has to work on a small scale as well as on a large scale. However, this ignores the fact that the actors can change through encounters. The repeatability of the scientific method is opposed to the unrepeatability and the dogma of novelty of the artistic method. Against the background of these considerations, a simple recording studio in a roofed outdoor space served as a place of encounter and negotiation.The radio show that emerged from the project was broadcast on and

performing soil

Performing Soil, Session 3. Photo: Silke kleine Kalvelage

performing soil 1

Performing Soil, Session 1. Photo: Hanes Sturzenegger

performing soil 2

Performing Soil, Session 2. Photo: Hanes Sturzenegger

performing soil 3

Performing Soil, Session 2. Photo: Silke kleine Kalvelage

performing soil 4

Performing Soil, Session 2. Photo: Silke kleine Kalvelage

perfoming soil 5

Performing Soil, Session 2. Photo: Silke kleine Kalvelage

Seemingly Unfinished

Seemingly Unfinished shed light on the beauty of the thin line that lies between the unfinished and the finished. The Roman author Pliny the Elder had already started reflecting on the concept of the unfinishedness, in his Natural History Book 35, by pointing out that unfinished works were highly appreciated because they offered more explicit information on the artists’ creative process and techniques. The exhibition presented seven works from paintings, sculptures, installations to embroidery by Fabio Guida, Laetitia Pascalin, Patrick Ostrowsky, Pascal Sidler, Sara Lavelle, Mickry 3 and Andrea Vera Wenger and allowed to investigate the artists’ intentions and their receptions on the audience as well as discuss social, psychological and philosophical aspects with the realm of contemporary art. The exhibition was divided in three successive groups ("On Transparency", "Under Construction" and "The Absence of Painting"), that allowed to focus on different ways of questioning its topic. All combined granted the audience tools to decipher the complexity of an unfinished aesthetic in completed artworks. Seemingly Unfinished took place from 12th March to 2nd April 2021 at Kulturfolger in Zürich and was curated by Marcel Hörler and Michael Almeida.

Mickry 3, Do Not Enter, 2021. Photo: Andrea Vera Wenger

Sara Lavelle, Self-Portrait Minnesota Fall, 2016. Photo: Andrea Vera Wenger

Andrea Vera Wenger, Sibling, 2021

Pascal Sidler, Spiegelbild, 2019. Photo: Andrea Vera Wenger

Fabio Guida, Untitled, 2019. Photo: Andrea Vera Wenger

Patrick Ostrowsky, it makes me feel giddy, 2020. Photo: Andrea Vera Wenger

Laetitia Pascalin, Untitled, 2020. Photo: Andrea Vera Wenger


HOX is a magazine for critical reflections on human-animal relations. Various artistic text and image contributions explore the question of what a shared future of humans and other animals should look like and what obstacles, fears and opportunities can be in this relationship. In October 2020, the first issue was published on an organic farm in the periphery of the Canton of Zurich by the publishers - Valérie Hug, Jakob Lienhard and Marcel Hörler. The magazine brings together artistic, aesthetic as well as analytical and scientific image and text contributions, combines in editorial terms call for papers and curation and sets a focus per issue. A complexly layered construct of subtopics is placed within an experimental design framework that allows the content to speak for itself. At the forefront of HOX is: the process of publishing, the process of designing, the process of understanding.

HOX No. 2. Photo: Fabienne Watzke

Noëmi Ceresola, Anthropornography 2.0., 2021. Photo: Fabienne Watzke

Chi Him Chik, Performance. Photo: Fabienne Watzke

HOX No. 1. Photo: Mischa Schlegel

HOX No. 1. Photo: Mischa Schlegel

Jessica Jurassica, Claude Bühler, Im Zeichen des Hahns, 2020. Photo: Mischa Schlegel


Transformations have always been part of cultural practices that fascinate and disturb at the same time. A living being that suddenly stops, apparently destroys itself and rises again as a completely new creature. From the privileged deities of the pre-Christian polytheistic religions to fantastic hybrid beings - half human, half animal - from legends, fairy tales and fantasy to complex metamorphosis images and stories in literature, the relationship between humans and animals is a frequently treated topic. In the wake of recent technological and medical advances, which make it possible to change bodies and exchange organs between humans and animals, or to breed human cells in animals, questions about a common future of humans and animals a new urgency. For the exhibition VEE (May 23rd to October 3rd, 2020) Badel/Sarbach, Benjamin Egger, Ernestyna Orlowska, Fridolin Schoch, Ina Weise and Patrick Ostrowsky made installative, sculptural and performative interventions on the agricultural farm Hof Blum in Samstagern. Performances, screenings and shows by Daniela Ehrsam, Ivy Monteiro, Maya Rochat and Soya The Cow accompanied the opening and the closing. "Community," "Body," and "Transformation" were among the thematic focuses of the exhibition. Furthermore the exhibition was extended by farm talks with guests Antoine F. Goetschel, Viviane Ehrensberger, Jacques Fuchs and Hans Preisig and mimicry workshops, designed by Julia Wäckerlin and Pia Schwarz. VEE was created in collaboration with Jakob Lienhard, Valérie Hug and Martin Blum.

Vernissage. Photo: Stefan Tschumi

Patrick Ostrowsky, FIRE SIGHT, 2020. Photo: Stefan Tschumi

Daniela Ehrsam, Aerial Hoop Show. Photo: Stefan Tschumi

Soya The Cow, My joy, my choice, my juices, 2020. Photo: Stefan Tschumi

Benjamin Egger, my body is because of dogs, 2020. Photo: Benjamin Egger

Badel/Sarbach, Hotties in the Neighborhood, 2020. Photo: Mischa Schlegel

Ernestyna Orlowska, I’ve Been Feeling It Too (Chicken Farm Version), 2020. Photo: Stefan Tschumi

Ernestyna Orlowska, Nursing Tops & Mum Utility Pants, 2020. Photo: Mischa Schlegel
Fridolin Schoch, Knot Gathering, 2020. Photo: Stefan Tschumi

Ina Weise, 0,000005483149859%, 2020. Photo: Mischa Schlegel

Ivy Monteiro, Tituba.2Point.OH!, 2020. Photo: Mischa Schlegel


Sustainability is no longer just a question of ecological circumstances such as climate change, geographical particularities or agricultural technologies but a question of production and consumption. Between April 20th and September 7th, 2019, the Plateaux Festival invited artists to discuss sustainability issues and solutions within the framework of the ecological farm Froh Ussicht in Samstagern, in the periphery of Zurich. In addition, guests were invited to take up the theme of the festival with a Carte Blanche, in order tackle curated performances, film evenings, installations and actions with unexpected ideas. The festival was designed by Marcel Hörler and Mateo Chacon-Pino. Design and code: Lydia Perrot and Lisa Li. Following an invitation by Martin Blum. The art mediation program was designed by Seline Fülscher. With artistic contributions by Artist Organizations International, Aurélie Strumans, Carina Erdmann & Anna Kindermann, Johanna Bruckner, Johanna Kotlaris, Martina Mächler, Matthew C. Wilson, Nino Baumgartner, San Keller, Simon Würsten Marin, Thomas Geiger and Yael Wicki. Guests included Bergkrautsyndikat, Kunsthaus Aussersihl, Kunst Du, Wagner & Friends with Carlos Fernández and Violeta Burckhard Razeto.

Johanna Kotlaris, Economies, 2019. Photo: Samirah Hohl

Song Book, San Keller, 2019. Photo: Alicia Olmos Ochoa

Aurélie Strumans, Green verticality to a red fiction, 2019. Photo: Alicia Olmos Ochoa

Nino Baumgartner, Shortcut, 2019. Photo: Alicia Olmos Ochoa

Carlos Fernández, Do Some Agrofit, 2019. Photo: Juliette Chretien

Thomas Geiger, I Want To Become a Millionaire Talks, 2019. Photo: Sandino Scheidegger

Kunsthaus Aussersihl, Aktion 016: im Gjätt, 2019. Photo: Marcel Hörler

Johanna Bruckner, Körper ohne Währung, 2019. Photo: Samirah Hohl

Simon Würsten Marín, Wenn Kunst Landschaft gestaltet, 2019. Photo: Samirah Hohl


Dogo is a residency dedicated to artistic development and the mediation and production of contemporary art. Opened in 2019 and located at the Rathaus für Kultur in Lichtensteig, artists get the opportunity to develop professionally. Artistic processes, as well as the resulting works are documented in the public online archive. Dogo organizes events together with the artists, such as discussions or experimental mediation formats. A further component of Dogo is the mediation of art. Dogo Kunstschule organizes a wide range of workshops and projects. The year is rounded off by the Dogo Totale, the group exhibition with selected works which have been produced during the year. Dogo was initiated by Hanes Sturzenegger, Julia Wäckerlin, Marcel Hörler, Maura Kressig and Sirkka Ammann.

Rathaus für Kultur. Photo: Hanes Sturzenegger

Rathaus für Kultur. Photo: Hanes Sturzenegger

Sonja Hornung, Sperre II, 2019. Photo: Hanes Sturzenegger

Photo: Hanes Sturzenegger

Patrick Ostrowsky, BURNING!, 2019. Photo: Hanes Sturzenegger


While the tourist takes the gondola lift to the summit and a refugee leaves his home, the digital nomad works somewhere on his boat. Never before has mobility manifested itself in so many ways as it does today. Spatial, social and virtual mobility has become the basic principle of a global and networked world. Anyone who is mobile is receptive - open to something new, perhaps better. Mobility also demands mental and physical mobility from people. On the one hand, it breaks down social structures and, on the other, reinforces the perception of existing, unequal preconditions. The broad concept of mobility was the focus of Weiter. As part of Weiter, Christian Eberhard, Collectif Chuglu, Damiano Curschellas, Gisa Frank, Lino Bally, Flurina Brügger, Iris Brodbeck, Marc Jenny, Matthias Rüegg and Robin Michel developed works en route. From September 9th to 23rd, 2017 they presented their works at three different traffic junctions in the lower, middle and upper Toggenburg. The exhibition was a co-production between Kunsthalle[n] Toggenburg and Arthur Junior.

Gisa Frank, Iifahre – Usfahre, 2017. Photo: Hanes Sturzenegger

Robin Michel, Ferrari, 2017. Photo: Hanes Sturzenegger

Flurina Brügger, Iris Brodbeck, Gesprächsteppich, 2017. Photo: Hanes Sturzenegger

Collectif Chuglu, Immense comme un detail, 2017. Photo: Hanes Sturzenegger

Matthias Rüegg, Please Wait Over There, 2017. Photo: Hanes Sturzenegger

Water Walling, Collectif Chuglu, 2017. Photo: Hanes Sturzenegger

Marc Jenny. Photo: Hanes Sturzenegger

Gisa Frank, Iifahre – Usfahre, 2017. Photo: Hanes Sturzenegger
Matthias Rüegg, Ignore, 2017. Photo: Matthias Rüegg
Matthias Rüegg, You're Completely Wrong, 2017. Photo: Matthias Rüegg
Christian Eberhard, 2017. Photo: Hanes Sturzenegger


Imagine Rhythm used the expressiveness of dancing and filmmaking to overcome cultural and linguistic obstacles. A group of deaf and hearing dancers from Armenia, Switzerland and Germany created a dance performance during ten days together with the choreographers Melanie Alexander and Hayk Hobosyan and showed it in public space in the city of Zurich in August 2017. Through a self-empowering approach, the dancers could create their own body movements, make use of their skills and transform it into a contemporary dance performance. The whole activity was filmed on site by a group of filmmakers in collaboration with documentary filmmaker, producer Seg Kirakossian in order to document the learning process. The project was designed also for engaging the participants in social life and giving them knowledge on how they can implement social initiatives in the future. Besides the dance workshop, a group discussion was held, with a focus on the problems and needs of people with hearing problems to promote awareness about the Convention of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. The project was designed by Marcel Hörler and Seg Kirakossian in collaboration between Subkult and Doctor Cinema NGO.

Photo: Stefan Tschumi

Photo: Seg Kirakossian

Photo: Stefan Tschumi

Photo: Stefan Tschumi

Performance. Photo: Stefan Tschumi

Photo: Stefan Tschumi


Catherine Xu, Samuel Koch, Nina Emge, Lucie Biloshytskyy, James Stephen Wright, Domingo Chaves, Edmée Laurin, Fridolin Schoch and Martina Mächler received six orange envelopes on 9 July 2016. Six thousand Swiss francs in thousand notes - the most valuable banknote in the world. The artists had the task of spending all the money on Obere Bahnhofstrasse, the shopping street of Wil. The works that were presented to the public from July 30th to August 13th, 2016 and were created from the purchased goods. Shopping dealt with a theme that has always moved society and the art world. We want it, we love it and we do it. From young to old. Whether conscious, ecological or wasteful. We shop, we choose and shopping should be fun, or not?! That's why the cross-media art project treated consumption as a act of life and asked questions. Questions about the commodity art, artistic work and investment in general. The artistic processes were documented and part of the exhibition, which was initiated by Arthur Junior and the City of Wil in collaboration with the graphic design studio Badesaison.

Fridolin Schoch, Edmée Laurin, Fridolin Schoch, Limited Time Offer, 2016. Photo: Hanes Sturzenegger

Graphic Design, Badesaison, 2019. Photo: Hanes Sturzenegger

Lucie Biloshitskyy, papier. wert. papier, 2017. Photo: Lea Huser

James Stephen Wright, Argent, 2017. Photo: Lea Huser

Catherine Xu, 2017. Photo: Hanes Sturzenegger

Martina Mächler, 100%@work / do what you love, 2016. Photo: Hanes Sturzenegger

Domingo Chaves, Edmée Laurin, Fridolin Schoch, Limited Time Offer, 2017. Photo: Hanes Sturzenegger