Tag Archives: Venice Biennial Art

Venice contemporary and modern art



Giancarlo-Franco-Tramontin,-white marble contemporary sculpture

Giancarlo Franco Tramontin

Venice Biennial 2013


The Venice Biennial beginning


In 1895, Riccardo Selvatico, the mayor of Venice conceived the ambitious idea to have a permanent international contemporary art exhibition, where artists from primarily Europe, were invited to participate. As it gradually evolved in the early 20th century and was held on a biennial basis, influential countries at this time desired their own art pavilions, which was granted, and they flourished in the Giardini, the public gardens of Venice initiated by Napoleon.
The contemporary and visionary direction of the Biennial was reinforced in 1948, after a 6 year hiatus due to WW2. It restarted with an exhibition of Cubist and Surrealist trends including a retrospective of Picasso (his first appearance at the Biennale at age 67) and works by artists Ernst, Dali, Kandinsky, Klee, Miro, Giacometti and Mondrian.  The Biennale has continued to exhibit avant-garde art, including the introduction of abstract expressionism in the 1950’s and recognizing PopArt in the 60‘s. In 1956 there was a significant Impressionist Exhibition which presented works by Monet, Sisley, Cézanne, Degas, Gauguin, and Van Gogh. The French Pavilion lined up personal collections of Maillol, Braque, and Chagall while the British Pavilion brought Turner and Henry Moore to Venice.



Phyllida Barlow’s sculptural installation, 'Folly,' in the British Pavilion.Credit Gianni Cipriano for The New York Times

Phyllida Barlow’s sculptural installation, ‘Folly,’ in the British Pavilion.

Photo – Gianni Cipriano, Venice Biennale 2017


There are now over 90 international pavilions that feature contemporary art during the Venice Biennial art show along with numerous other gallery spaces that populate the labyrinth of Venice.The Biennale is open from May to November and is the oldest and largest biennale, making it one of the most prestigious international events in the contemporary art world today.
The main exhibit of the Biennale is located in the Giardini, a sprawling park that features a large Central Pavilion housing the works curated by the festival’s director. Every Biennale is curated by a different director, who chooses the theme along with the exhibits for the Central Pavilion (the original site of the Biennale) and in the Arsenale, the historic fortress-like shipyard and armory from the era when Venice was a major world power.

The grandeur of the centuries old architecture of Venice, featuring enchanting Gothic, Byzantine, and Moorish influenced palaces and mixed with buildings of charm and huge warehouse galleries, densely planted on its winding canals, provides an intriguing and striking contrariety for showcasing contemporary, cutting edge art and installations. The  Biennale remains a premier destination for art enthusiasts.

The 57th International Art Exhibition – Viva Arte Viva, curated by Christine Macel and organized by the Biennale di Venezia chaired by Paolo Baratta, will be open until Sunday 26 November 2017.



Palazzo delle Esposizioni Giardini, Venezia, 2009

Photo: Giorgio Zucchiatti




Nigeria-Peju-Alatise-Flying-Girls-2017 -- Photo-Courtesy-Peju-Alatise-noresize Nigerian-Pavilion-installation

Nigeria artist Peju Alatise – ‘Flying Girls’ at the Nigerian Pavilion

Venice Biennial 2017 — Photo Peju Alatise



Maiastra-bronze sculpture--Constantin-Brancusi

‘Maiastra’ — Constantin Brancusi

Peggy Guggenheim Collection



55th-venice-biennale-2013-Marc-Quinn sculptural head

Marc Quinn sculptural head

55th Venice Biennale. 2013



Shoja Azarii – Frame from video narrative ‘Banquette of Houries (King Of Black)’ retelling Iranian Nizami Ganjavi’s epic poem, Haft Pyykar (Seven Beauties)



Roberto Cuoghi - 'Il Palazzo Enciclopedico'

Roberto Cuoghi – ‘Belinda’

‘Il Palazzo Enciclopedico’ 55th Venice biennale 2013




Benedictine Monks Contemplate Perspective—John Pawson




Tony Cragg – ‘Secretions’ 

Ca’ Pesaro – Gallery of Modern Art – 2005



Subodh Gupta,-'Hungry Gods' Palazzo Grassi

Subodh Gupta,-‘Hungry Gods’

Palazzo Grassi


Art Biennale exhibition, Venice 1964. Sculpture – Standing, Vertical, Voluptuous

Photo by Archivio Cameraphoto Epoche-Getty Images



A boat with two oars made of tree roots and soil by Finnish Olavi Lanoo,Venice 1978Photo by Adriano AlecchiMondadori Portfolio via Getty Images)

A boat with two oars made of tree roots and soil by Finn, Olavi Lanoo,Venice 1978

Photo by Adriano Alecchi Mondadori Portfolio via Getty Images)



Cindy-Sherman sculpture doll

Cindy Sherman



Sarah Lucas bronze sculpture Venice Biennial

Sarah Lucas bronze sculpture

Venice Biennial 2015





3d printed sculpture – Zaha Hadid



‘Guardians of Time’ – Manfred Kili Kielnhofer




At the Correr Museum in Venice, 'Gruppo di Leda e il Cigno'. This is a Roman replica from Hadrian's era of a 1st century Greek original.

 ‘Gruppo di Leda e il Cigno’  – Roman replica 0f 1st Century Greek original

At the Correr Museum in Venice,



Bill-Viola-Emergence -- Renaissance--Carpaccio

Bill Viola ‘Emergence’  — Renaissance–Carpaccio



Blue-Star-Linz---Otto-Piene monumental abstract sculpture

‘Blue Star Linz’ — Otto Piene


Tree sculpture - Celeste Boursier Mougenot--French-pavilion

Celeste Boursier Mougenot — French pavilion



Chinese artist Liu Ruo Wang Iron Wolves. At the center of the copy of Michelangelo's Pietà. They symbolize the art and religious persecution insecurity.

Chinese artist Liu Ruo Wang ‘Iron Wolves’ at the center of the copy of Michelangelo’s Pietà




Chris-Ofili-paintings Biennale-di-Venezia

Chris Ofili paintings

Biennale di Venezia



‘Treasures from the wreck Unbelievable’ — Damien Hirst – 2017 Venice Biennial – ‘Vive Arte Viva’

189 treasures retrieved from the ocean floor —  ‘Treasures tap into a desire for belief, for a connection with the past’,  – Damien Hirst

‘Somewhere between lies and truth lies the truth’



Damien-Hirst-The-warrior-and-the-Bear scuylpture

The warrior and the Bear’ – Damien Hirst



damien-Damien Hirst’s ‘Demon with Bowl’hirst-treasures-from-the-wreck-unbelievable-venice-art-biennale_Palazzo Grassi and Punta della Dogana Photo Prudence Cuming

Damien Hirst’s ‘Diablo with Bowl’ — Palazzo Grassi and Punta della Dogana

Photo Prudence Cuming




Damien Hirst-Treasures-from-the-wreck-Unbelievable-venice-art-biennal-Headless Diablo with bowl

Headless Diablo with bowl – Damien Hirst




‘Aspect of Katie Ishtar ¥o-landi’ Mauro Eugenio Atzei - flickr

‘Aspect of Katie Ishtar Yo-landi’ – Damien Hirst

Mauro Eugenio Atzei – flickr




‘Hydra and Kali’ Damien Hirst



Damien Hirst-in Venice Save fantasy--Aten, Punta-della Dogana

Damien Hirst in Venice Save Fantasy 2017 — ‘Aten’

Punta-della Dogana



Damien Hirst in Venice Save fantasy Lion Women of Mayor Asit, Punta della Dogana

Damien Hirst in Venice Save fantasy ‘Lion Women of Asit Mayor ‘

Punta della Dogana



Damien-Hirst--'Sphinx'-white sculpture

Damien Hirst–‘Sphinx’


‘Taking the Mickey’ – Damien Hirst



'Treasures from the wreck Unbelievable' Barnacle Goofy sculpture

‘Treasures from the wreck Unbelievable’ Barnacle Goofy sculpture – Damien Hirst



'Hydra and Kali' - Damien Hirst - sculpture of Kali in battle with Hydra

‘Hydra and Kali’ Damien Hirst



damien-hirst-treasures-from-the-wreck-unbelievable Blue male sculpture

Blue sculpture bust – Damien Hirst

Palazzo Grassi at entrance to the Grand Canal


Dea-Alata with jade insert wings - Damien Hirst -- Mauro-Eugenio-Atzei--f;ickr

‘Dea Alati’ gold bust – Damien Hirst

Mauro Eugenio Atzei – flickr



Mayan aztec time disc - Damien Hirst

Mayan disk – Damien Hirst



Underwater ‘Hydra and Kali’ Damien Hirst



‘Hydra and Kali’ Damien Hirst



Medusa-Verde--Damien Hirst-Mauro-Eugenio-Atzei-f;ickr

‘Medusa Verde’ –Damien Hirst

Mauro Eugenio Atzei – flickr




damien-hirst-treasures-from-the-wreck-unbelievable - bronze head

Bronze head – Damien Hirst



Divers discover ancient solar art head

Solar head sculpture  ‘Sun Disc’  – ‘Treasures from the wreck Unbelievable



Damien-Hirst-gold-sun disc

Solar head sculpture ‘Sun Disc’ – ‘Treasures from the wreck Unbelievable’ – Damien Hirst





damien-hirst-underwater treasures-from-the-wreck-unbelievable

Damien Hirst -‘Treasures from the wreck Unbelievable’



Damien Hirst -‘Treasures from the wreck Unbelievable’



Elisabetta-di-Maggio-Lotus leaf stabilized and hand-cut with a scalpel.Elizabeth MayVenezia Contemporanea

Elisabetta di Maggio – Lotus leaf stabilized and hand-cut with a scalpel.Elizabeth

Venezia Contemporanea



Diego Perrone, ‘Vittoria (Adolfo Wildt)’

Venice Biennale—2013



Henry Moore bronze sculptures at the Peggy Guggenheim Museum in Venice

Henry Moore bronze sculptures

Peggy Guggenheim Museum in Venice



Hirst's 'Five Grecian Nudes', 'Five Antique Torsos', and 'Grecian Nude (three versions)'. (Photographed by Prudence Cuming Associates

Damien Hirst’s ‘Five Grecian Nudes’, ‘Five Antique Torsos’, and ‘Grecian Nude (three versions)’

Photographed by Prudence Cuming Associates



Roberto Cuoghi Imitation-Of-Christ--57th-Venice-Biennial

 ‘Imitation Of Christ’ — Roberto Cuoghi

57th Venice Biennial, 2017


 ‘Imitation Of Christ’ — Roberto Cuoghi

57th Venice Biennial, 2017


Marc Quinn´s sculpture The Overwhelming World of Desire was part of the Statements 7 exhibition

Marc Quinn’s sculpture ‘The Overwhelming World of Desire’ was part of the Statements 7 exhibition




Max Klinger and Gustav Klimt

Max Klinger life size bronze sculpture of ‘Badende’  (Bather) Black and Gustav Klimt- ‘Juddith II’ –Salome



Mist, 2014 jaume-plensa-venice-art-biennale-photography by jonty wilde the Basilica of San Giorgio Maggiore

‘Mist’  – Jaume Plensa – Venice Biennale

Basilica of San Giorgio Maggiore

photography by Jonty Wilde



Alberto Giacometti,-Place-(détail),-1947-1948

Alberto Giacometti, ‘Place’ – 1947-1948

Peggy Guggenheim Museum




Mariano Fortuny y Madrazo – ‘The Flower Maidens’

Palazzo Fortuny art museum, Venice




All the World’ Futures Occupations Discoveries,installation by Brazilian artist Antonio Manu

Gabriel Bouys – AFP Getty-Images

Venice Biennial 2015



Urs Fischer's facsimile of Giovanni Giambologna’s 'The rape of the sabine women', executed in candle wax with wicks, at Venice art Biennale, 2011.

Urs Fischer’s facsimile of Giovanni Giambologna’s ‘The rape of the sabine women’, executed as a self destructing wax candle sculpture

Venice art Biennale, 2011.




Mirko (bronze) ‘Leone urlante II’ 1956. Peggy Guggenheim Museum garden Venice

Venice Peggy Guggenheim Museum






Chariot’ — Fritz Koenig


Peggy Guggenheim Museum



Peggy-Guggenheim-Collection-Mimmo-Paladino-(b.-1948),-The Cloven Viscount, Bronze

Mimmo Paladino– ‘The Cloven Viscount’, Bronze

Peggy Guggenheim Collection




Alexander Calder

Peggy Guggenheim Collection


Photo-richard-ivey-courtesy michael-werner-new-york-london--venice-art-biennale_The Golden Tower by James Lee Byars

Venice art biennale — ‘The Golden Tower’ by James Lee Byars

Photo – Richard Ivey courtesy Michael Werner-NY, London




Female head painting Mountain Angel Sergey_Smirnov_Venice_2002

‘Mountain Angel’  – Sergey Smirnov

Venice 2002



Albanian artist Helidon Xhixha’s iceberg installation for the Serbian Arab Republic pavilion.

Italian Albanian artist Helidon Xhixha’s iceberg installation for the Serbian Arab Republic pavilion.

Venice Biennial 2015



the-dancing-satyrs---Lucio-Bubacco glass sculpture

Lucio Bubacco glass sculpture – ‘The Dancing Satyrs’



The End of Carrying All' by Kenyan artist Wangeti Mutu--Pavilion of the Nations venice-biennale-arte-2015 Andrea MerolaEPA)

‘The End of Carrying All’ by Kenyan artist Wangeti Mutu

Pavilion of the Nations Venice Biennale 2015

Photo Andrea Merola EPA



The inflatable sculpture 'Breath' (2012), by the artist Marc Quinn,

The inflatable sculpture ‘Breath’ (2012), by the artist Marc Quinn



The-multi-material-sculpture-The-Cave-Painter-by-Toronto-artist Shary-Boyle

 Multi material sculpture ‘The Cave Painter’ by Toronto artist Shary Boyle



The-Robing-of-the-Bride-Maz-Ernst-1940 Peggy-Guggenheim-Collection,-Venice

‘The Robing of the Bride’ -Max Ernst, 1940

Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice




‘The Weatherman’— Max Ernst


Immagine di Ca’ Pesaro Galleria Internazionale d’Arte Moderna, Venezia



Together-Jaume Plensa-venice-art-biennale-photography-by-jonty-wilde

‘Together’ – Jaume Plensa- Venice biennale

photography by Jonty Wilde



Urs Fischer-at-the-Palazzo-Grassi-Spinoza Rhapsody

Urs Fischer  – ‘Spinoza Rhapsody’

Palazzo Grassi




 Chiharu Shiota’s ‘The Key in the Hand’ the feature installation of the Japanese Pavillion. Thousands of donated keys are suspended over an interwoven length of string.

Venice Biennale 2015



Vetro-d’artista glass sculpture-Lucio-Bubacco

Vetro d’artista glass sculpture – Lucio Bubacco, Murano

Photo – Norbert Heyl




William Barton and Djakapurra Munyarryun at the Australian pavilion with art by Fiona Hall in the background.

Venice Biennale 2015




Zaha Hadid suspended sculptures




Zaha Hadid sculpture – Venice architecture biennale 2012 “Common ground”



'Tempera' - Francesco Hayez 1817 - Museo Correr, Venice

‘Tempera’ – Francesco Hayez

1817 – Museo Correr, Venice







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