Axelle Stiefel, The Operator, 2016. Performance

Codex Operator

2018. Performance

A change of speed
a change of style

a change of tongue
gotta be made

step outside
jump into
go within

that coat

what’s fitting in?

can it be filling
a pocket?

a stone shaped by
a million years

will give thirst

a mountain river
flooded mouth

what’s these fishes
swimmin in a mall

tongue vibrate against spitting mices
a thousand, among damp linen

foggy cottons
synthetic skins
‘longside bag of bones

blankety blanks and sheets of silk

overheard tearing
sliding sound

permeable voices
running ‘round

expelling particles
of woven fabrics

a needle and thread
will serve

a vehicle, for whom may adjust
to transportation

pale screens ruined
by frenetic use

collected juice
made tint

dyeing cloth
revealing blue

the dot is an egg is a mouse
green is
over the edge
of mutating spheres

forced red colour
enter a battle

into sensing fields

a touch of will
a pressure of ink
astonishing borders
vanishing in

fold material
clear spot

emerging figures
roll and wrapped

dragged further
slippery traces

wishful thinking
of disarray

gun’s sweat
wiped away

swallowed by kerchief

twisted wrist
disclose a fist


My work is cinematic and performative. When the exhibition is not the medium itself, I use my own voice – amplified – as another channel to address the forces of production at stake in a moment of attention. Language is a primary material. Voice is the point of singularization of meaning. Machines are the vehicles. A matter of tuning.

Axelle Stiefel is a swiss artist from Lausanne, born in 1988. Former resident at Wiels Center for Contemporary Art, Brussels in 2013, she was recently hosted at Forde, Geneva for a solo show. 2016-2017 She was a visiting lecturer at the ENSAPC Paris-Cergy where she led a workshop called « Reading in Things », initiated by Federico Nicolao, with a focus on multiple aspects of the practice of reading and an emphasis on female authors.