The Venice Biennale, founded in 1895, is one of the oldest and most significant cultural institutions in the world, welcoming over a half a million visitors to the prestigious art exhibition annually. The Art Biennale is a worldwide cultural event that attracts a varied international public throughout a 6-month exhibition period. With approximately 150 artists from more than 50 countries and nearly 100 countries participating, the International Art Exhibition has been recognized as the world leader in contemporary art exhibitions and biannually welcomes over a half a million visitors to Venice's Giardini and Arsenale venues. These historic venues play host to an interdisciplinary programme of live events, including dramatic book readings, recitals, film screenings, performances and public debates throughout the exhibition.
In 2015, a collaboration between the La Biennale di Venezia and the Google Cultural Institute made it possible to put the exhibition on a digital platform that can be browsed online well after the end of the exhibition. The 57th International Art Exhibition was curated by the Artistic Director of the Visual Arts department, Christine Macel, in the Giardini and Arsenale venues, and took place from May 13 to November 26, 2017.
This year, The 58th International Art Exhibition will take place from May 11 to Novemeber 24, 2019 and will be titled May You Live in Interesting Times, after an ancient Chinese curse referring to periods of uncertainty, crisis and turmoil; "interesting times," exactly as the ones we live in today. Curator of the 58th International Art Exhibition will be Ralph Rugoff, the Director of the Hayward Gallery of London since 2006.
The program will utilize the city of Venice and the Biennale as the primary site for experiential learning, with additional fieldtrips, museum visits and walking tours of Venice to provide students with a background of Venetian hisory and culture from renaissance to present-day.
Walking tours in Venice
The program includes walking tours of Venice that will provide students with a background of Venetian history and culture from the renaissance to the present-day, typically focusing on
- The Ghetto
- The architectural history and significance of Venice
- The art of the renaissance through visits to museums, Scuole grande, Accademia, local churches and cathedrals
Visits to sites of importance within/around Venice
Courses, classroom discussion, and guest lectures will be enhanced by fieldtrips designed to provide insights into the international art scene. These visits typically include:
- The Accademia museum
- Peggy Guggenheim’s jewel-box collection of modern art
- The Mario Fortuny Museum
- The Prada Foundation
- The François Pinault Collection
- Many installations presented in the palazzi and private buildings across the city
Students will learn about Venice as a site not only for contemporary but also for renaissance art. Additional field trips may be planned for:
- The glass factories on Murano
- The lace-making center of Burano
- The medieval mosaic of the Last Judgment in the Basilica of Santa Maria Assunta on Torcello
- Giotto’s Arena Chapel in Padua
- Historical Trieste, the Castle Miramar and its botanical gardens
- Bologna (tentative) to attend the annual Cinema Rittrovato Festival (at an additional cost) may be offered (optional)