The Villa Sträuli – Changes Coming in October 2021

Beginning 1 October 2021, we – Merly Knörle and Susanne Ammann – will be taking over the general management and programming of the Villa Sträuli cultural centre on behalf of the Sulzberg Foundation.


We will support the creation, presentation, and dissemination of contemporary art by providing a one-of-a-kind international artists’ residency programme and a year-round public venue for cooperative undertakings. Collaborative projects at the local, national, and international level will strengthen the initiative to achieve global visibility. We will build on the Villa Sträuli’s potential as an artists’ residence, cultural laboratory, project and exhibition space, and, more generally, on its quality as a place of encounter, while incorporating global transformation processes in art and the demands of the digitised world. A brief overview of where we will be focusing our efforts:  Artist-in-Residence (AiR) The AiR programme sees itself as a support platform for professional artists and cultural practitioners from all over the world. Tailor-made residencies will be offered, with an emphasis on networking support, project development, production assistance, and presentation opportunities. It should be noted that in the future the Villa Sträuli will not be providing grants or financial support. The new concept for our artists’ residencies will rely on a hybrid form of contractual arrangements with sponsoring partners and institutions around the world.  Cultural laboratory plus education and the exhibition space as event venue As a cultural laboratory, the Villa Sträuli will feature a well-rounded, unconventional and innovative programme in tandem with exhibitions, concerts, discussions, performances, research and education. The Saturday Matinée event will form part of the cultural laboratory.  Co-working space and venue hire The ground-floor area is to become a creative space for the networking and developing of visionary ideas in an environment of cultural and social interaction. There will be flexible workspaces for those active in the arts, cultural institutions, communications professionals, architects, IT/new media specialists, preferably with a focus on culture-related activities. It will still be possible to hire the ground-floor rooms for private occasions.

The Bistro

Infrastructure will continue to be available to catering businesses for venue hires. A detailed concept and a variety of ideas are under development.  


We are open to partnerships, collaborations, and contacts with foundations, funding agencies, business and industry, and we look forward to receiving feedback, which can be sent to: Merly Knörle, Artistic Director:

The New Directors

Merly Knörle-Izquierdo

A successful curator, Merly Knörle ran the international gallery knoerle&baettig in Winterthur for several years, where she realised over 40 exhibitions featuring national and international artists. Since 2013, she has undertaken a number of her own cultural projects in a freelance capacity: in 2014, she was curator of the international Urban Art Festival Winterthur held in celebration of the city’s 750th anniversary, and in 2015, she was associate curator of the 12th Havana Biennial. She writes texts for exhibition catalogues and artist monographs and regularly takes part in panel discussions. Currently she is curating the transdisciplinary art festival Intra Muros, which is set to take place in Winterthur in November 2020.
Susanne Ammann

After completing her studies in cultural management, Susanne Ammann decided to focus on the business side of running and administering cultural institutions. In Berne, she led the studio house PROGR during its post interim-use phase, co-founded and ran the VISAVIS cultural centre in Berne’s Altstadt (Old Town), and was actively involved in the running of the Dampfzentrale. After a brief foray into the innovation scene, she went into business for herself and, among other things, managed projects on the circular economy in the building sector and fundraised for an NGO in Namibia.
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