Gabriel Stöckli

Stoeckli gabriel portrait cahiers dartistes pro helvetia milano

Photoautomat plus style

Necessity is the mother of invention, and Gabriel Stöckli really has a need to create. Working exclusively with analogue formats, and with the materials that are readily available in his everyday life, Stöckli places an emphasis on all that may be transformed with a combination of the hands and the mind. Therefore it follows that his artworks are crafted sculptures, and also high grain photography of enviable composition, but so too that they are an extension of the artist themselves. These are works that are novel, distinctive and fun. Working with untreated softwood, building materials, and found objects such as skateboards, Stöckli presents a fresh new layer of expression by lifting away veils of discarded meaning. The artist has an interest in the tools readily available around him too, for example the passport style photo-booth by his studio, that allows for straightforward documentation of his artistic endeavours, tracing the progress of time and the accompanying changes to reality. Those photos, spat out into life by an uncaring but ultimately reliable object are incorporated into new artworks with a striking consistency. It is as if Stöckli, through persistence and patience, has been able to gain a mastery over his environment and shape it in such a way that benefits his own style of expression.

Sometimes I ask myself if redocumenting an object, a work, isn’t a bit like reheating leftovers.

Gabriel Stöckli

Stoeckli gabriel hey cahiers dartistes pro helvetia milano

Simple is better

Using familiar, often relatable objects, the artworks contain a psychic resonance – there are rhythms and rhymes within the work that make them inviting for the viewer. We are offered a way into the world of Gabriel Stöckli, with an outstretched hand, and we are invited to imagine a world where we have touched those cups, or as a child cut out knees upon those very rocks that may form a part of an installation. Immediately, you see the striking physicality that runs throughout all of the artist’s work. There is an insistence upon the material, the object, the image of the thing in all its glory, and as soon as we see it, it becomes something else. While viewing these works, presented in clean spaces, tucked into corners, we share the artist’s interest in all those objects as an extension of themselves, and how an object can be transformed over and over by the hands into a shape that starts in the mind and ends in a changed form. Stöckli finds that plain objects can carry ideas further, the pattern of a floorboard will be more beautiful when captured and made art than a perfect reproduction of a fine decorative design. The uncomplicated material gives a better body for an idea. The works are tangible, and it is possible to see the places where they have been touched or shaped or indeed picked up from their resting place on the street. Stöckli finds a way in every one of his works to reveal the unbound potential that material is able to express. The artist’s use of simple, rough-hewn, or commonplace materials become a perfect conduit for a signal representing another, parallel reality of the artist’s choosing.

Text by Jonathan Ferguson

Stoeckli gabriel studio paris cahiers dartistes pro helvetia

Harshness and simplicity of forms suggest the feeling of precariousness and uncertainty that is typical of Stöckli's generation.

Giada Olivotto, curator

Stoeckli gabriel summer on a solitary beach cahiers dartistes pro helvetia milano

There are moments in which I need to see the documentation of my works in an instant tangible way.

Gabriel Stöckli

Biography Gabriel Stöckli

born 1991 in Mendrisio, Switzerland


2016-2018 MA, Visual arts and curatorial studies, NABA, Milan, Italy

2013-2015 BA, Visual arts, NABA, Milan, Italy

Exhibitions (selection)

Classics Revisited Classics Reinvented, curated by Jor Yin Fun and Francesca Battello, JCCAC, Hong Kong, China

Hey, Gelateria sogni di ghiaccio, Bologna, Italy (SOLO)
Open systems, curated by Giulietta.Basel, Museo Nitsch, Napoli, Italy
Eutropia, curated by Carolina Sanchez, Yimei Zhang, La Rada, Locarno, Italy

Storielle, Spazio Officina (Vetrina project), Chiasso, Switzerland (SOLO)
EMO, curated by Giada Olivotto, Schwobhaus, Berne, Switzerland
Carì Art Safari, Carì, Italy

Masquenada (duo show with Gianmaria Zanda), MÂT, Neuchâtel, Switzerland
Estate, autunno, State_of, Milano, Italy

Woof woof woof woof, who let the dogs out, Espace libre, Biel/Bienne, Switzerland
From cities to us, curated by Carolina Sanchez, Spazio Lampo, Chiasso, Switzerland

Conversa, Current Project, Milan, Switzerland (SOLO)

Residencies & Grants

Cité Internationale des Arts, Paris (residency)

Pro Arte/Gleyre (grant)

Nona edizione Premio Francesco Fabbri, curated by Carlo Sala (selected)
Bagni d’aria, Frassinetto, (residency)

BoCs Art, Cosenza (residency)
Premio giovani artisti, Spazio Officina, Chiasso (selected)

VIAVAI+, FARE, Pro Helvetia Cultural exchange Switzerland-Italy (residency)
La Fornace, Spino d’Adda (residency)

VIR Viafarini-in-residence, Milan (residency)

Via Industriae, Cancelli, Foligno, visiting professor Ana Devic (residency)

Other projects

since 2014
Co-director at Sonnenstube, Lugano (

Grant winner with Sonnenstube, Swiss Art Awards, Basel, Switzerland

Works by Gabriel Stöckli

  • Stoeckli gabriel cuori cahiers dartistes pro helvetia


    2021 / MDF and photo / 50 x 40 x 2 cm / 19.7 x 15.7 x 0.8 in

  • Stoeckli gabriel canyon cahiers dartistes pro helvetia


    2021 / MDF and photo / 50 x 40 x 2 cm / 19.7 x 15.7 x 0.8 in

  • Stoeckli gabriel ritaglio cahiers dartistes pro helvetia


    2021 / MDF and photo / 50 x 40 x 2 cm / 19.7 x 15.7 x 0.8 in

  • Stoeckli gabriel tranquillo cahiers dartistes pro helvetia sold


    2021 / Knitting wool / 100 x 20 x 15 cm / 39.4 x 7.9 x 5.9 in

  • Stoeckli gabriel seven layers cahiers dartistes pro helvetia

    Seven layers

    2020 / Skateboard decks / each 80 x 25 x 10 cm / 31.5 x 9.8 x 3.9 in

  • Stoeckli gabriel untitled mdf cahiers dartistes pro helvetia


    2021 / MDF and black paint / 20 x 15 x 2 cm / 7.9 x 5.9 x 0.8 in

  • Stoeckli gabriel pentole castagne cahiers dartistes pro helvetia

    Pentole castagne

    2020 / Plastic folder and ink on drawing paper / 30 x 22 cm / 11.8 x 8.7 in

  • Stoeckli gabriel untitled hands cahiers dartistes pro helvetia

    Untitled (hands)

    2021 / Plastic folder and photo / 30 x 22 cm / 11.8 x 8.7 in

  • Stoeckli gabriel in fondo al mare cahiers dartistes pro helvetia

    In fondo al mare

    2022 / Indian ink and watercolor on paper / 30 x 30 cm / 11.8 x 11.8 in

  • Stoeckli gabriel untitled graphics for an exhibition cahiers dartistes pro helvetia

    Untitled (graphics for an exhibition)

    2020 / Plastic folder and ink on drawing paper / 30 x 22 cm / 11.8 x 8.7 in

Cahier d'Artiste by Gabriel Stöckli

Cuori, 250 x 355 mm, 56 pages (published by Jungle Books)

After graduating from the Centro scolastico per le industrie artistiche in Lugano, Gabriel Stöckli earned a Bachelor’s degree in Visual Art and a Master’s degree in Visual Art and Curatorial Studies at La Nuova Accademia delle Belle Arti in Milan. Since 2014, he has also been co-director of the Lugano-based art space ‘Sonnenstube’. Gabriel creates his sculptural works from simple materials and ready-mades and presents them in an experimental style typical of the DIY age. Gabriel’s works explore the loss of a shared societal horizon of meaning. Questions of time and transience inform his choice of forms, actions and objects throughout his work. His preoccupation with an uncertain future drives his search for a sense of community and for tools enabling us to live in the here and now.

The centrepiece of Gabriel Stöckli’s Cahier d’Artiste, entitled “Cuori”, is a captivating conversation between the artist and the author Stella Succi. The book presents their conversation over 56 pages, enriched with visual interventions by Gabriel Stöckli. In addition to the conversation, the publication also includes a selection of illustrations from the renowned Italian weekly magazine La Settimana Enigmistica, which Stöckli has arranged into new collages.

Stella Succi (Milan) is an art historian and independent researcher. She has served on the editorial teams of Alfabeta2, Mousse Magazine, The Towner, and Prismo, and is currently the coordinator of Tascabile. She is a member of Altalena, an interdisciplinary research group in the visual arts field. Since 2020, she has been conducting dramaturgical research together with dancer and choreographer Annamaria Ajmone.

Gabriel Stöckli is part of the Cahiers d'Artistes selection. Eight artists were chosen by a jury to realize an artist book with the support of Pro Helvetia. Their artistic practice is presented online on

With the Cahiers d'Artistes, Swiss Arts Council Pro Helvetia enables artists from Switzerland to have their first publication and offers art professionals and the interested public a window to current trends in the Swiss art scene. For the first time, the Cahiers d'Artistes are not pure monographs, but artist books designed and produced by graphic designers Samuel Bänziger, Rosario Florio, and Larissa Kasper (Jungle Books) in close collaboration with the artists. More about the Cahiers d'Artistes on Pro Helvetia's website.

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