The Venice Biennale (La Biennale di Venezia) has for more than 100 years been one of the most esteemed cultural institutions in the world. Currently presided over by Paolo Baratta, the Biennale is leading other international events by setting the standard for research and promotion of new artistic trends. In Venice, specifically, it organizes events featuring global contemporary art that are considered the most important and critical of their kind.

This year, the Venice Biennale is presenting a wide selection of fairs and events due to their ever growing selection of venues. Most important will be the 55th International Art Exhibition from June 1 – November 24th, previewing May 29-31. The award ceremony and inauguration will then be on June 1. Curator Massimiliano Gioni has titled the 2013 Exhibition, “The Encyclopedic Palace.” This theme was chosen to evoke the Italian American artist Marino Auriti who in 1955 attempted to patent a design entitled “Palazzo Enciclopedico” (The Encyclopedic Palace). This design was for a fictional museum that would hold all “worldly knowledge [thereby] bringing together the greatest discoveries of the human race.” Auriti’s dream may never have been realized, but it has been honored and this years Exhibition at the Venice Biennale is no exception. 88 national participants will be exhibiting at the historial pavilions and among these, 10 countries will be participating for the first time. You can see below for a full list of the featured artists.

Others events to look forward to include the 42nd International Theatre Festival (August 1-11), the 70th Venice International Film Festival (August 28-September 7) as well as the 57th International Festival of Contemporary Music (October 4-13).

In addition to these momentous and annual events, the Venice Biennale is host to non-permanent events in their newly available venues across Venice: Ca’ Giustinian, the Sala delle Colonne, and the Biennale Library-ASAC at Giardini to name a few. Also thanks to these locations, the Bienalle hosts workshops and educational activities featuring “master classes, projects for schools, and guided tours.”

The history of the Venice Biennale dates back to the late 19th century when the first International Art Exhibition was organized.  “In the 1930s new festivals were born: Music, Cinema, and Theatre (the Venice Film Festival in 1932 was the first film festival ever organized). In 1980 the first Intl. Architecture Exhibition took place, and in 1999 Dance made its debut at the Venice Biennale. Established in 1895, the Biennale has an attendance today of over 370,000 visitors.

Artists exhibiting in the 55th International Art Exhibition:

Hilma af Klint, Victor Alimpiev, Ellen Altfest, Pawel Althamer, Levi Fisher Ames, Yuri Ancarani, Carl Andre, Uri Aran, Yüksel Arslan, Ed Atkins, Marino Auriti, Enrico Baj, Nikolay Bakharev, Miroslaw Balka, Phyllida Barlow, Morton Bartlett, Gianfranco Baruchello, Hans Bellmer, Neïl Beloufa, Graphic Works of Southeast Asia and Melanesia, Hugo A. Bernatzik Collection 1932–1937, Stefan Bertalan, Rossella Biscotti, Arthur Bispo do Rosário, John Bock, Frédéric Bruly Bouabré, Geta Bratescu, KP Brehmer, James Lee Byars, Roger Caillois, Varda Caivano, Vlassis Caniaris, James Castle, Alice Channer, George Condo, Aleister Crowley and Frieda Harris, Oliver Croy and Oliver Elser, R. Crumb, Roberto Cuoghi, Enrico David, Tacita Dean, John DeAndrea, Thierry De Cordier, Jos De Gruyter and Harald Thys, Walter De Maria, Simon Denny, Trisha Donnelly, Jimmie Durham, Ex-votos from the Santuario di Romituzzo, Harun Farocki, Peter Fischli & David Weiss, Linda Fregni Nagler, Aurélien Froment, Phyllis Galembo, Norbert Ghisoland, Yervant Gianikian and Angela Ricci Lucchi, Domenico Gnoli, Robert Gober, Tamar Guimarães and Kasper Akhøj, Guo Fengyi, João Maria Gusmão and Pedro Paiva, Wade Guyton, Haitian Vodou Banners, Duane Hanson, Sharon Hayes, Camille Henrot, Daniel Hesidence, Roger Hiorns, Channa Horwitz, Jessica Jackson Hutchins, René Iché, Hans Josephsohn, Carl Gustav Jung, Kan Xuan, Bouchra Khalili, Ragnar Kjartansson, Eva Kotátková, Evgenij Kozlov (E-E), Emma Kunz, Maria Lassnig, Mark Leckey, Augustin Lesage, Lin Xue, Herbert List, Sarah Lucas, Helen Marten, Paul McCarthy, Steve McQueen, Prabhavathi Meppayil, Marisa Merz, Pierre Molinier, Matthew Monahan, Laurent Montaron, Melvin Moti, Matt Mullican, Ron Nagle, Bruce Nauman, Paulo Nazareth, Albert Oehlen, Shinro Ohtake, J.D. ‘Okhai Ojeikere, Henrik Olesen, Damián Ortega, John Outterbridge, Paño Drawings, Marco Paolini, Diego Perrone, Walter Pichler, Otto Piene, Paloma Polo , Eliot Porter, Imran Qureshi, Carol Rama, Charles Ray, James Richards, Achilles G. Rizzoli, Pamela Rosenkranz, Dieter Roth, Viviane Sassen, Shinichi Sawada, Hans Schärer, Karl Schenker, Michael Schmidt, Jean-Frédéric Schnyder, Friedrich Schröder-Sonnenstern, Tino Sehgal, Richard Serra, Shaker Gift Drawings, Jim Shaw, Cindy Sherman, Laurie Simmons and Allan McCollum, Drossos P. Skyllas, Harry Smith, Xul Solar, Christiana Soulou, Eduard Spelterini, Rudolf Steiner, Hito Steyerl, José Antonio Suárez Londoño, Papa Ibra Tall, Dorothea Tanning, Anonymous Tantric Paintings, Ryan Trecartin, Rosemarie Trockel, Andra Ursuta, Patrick Van Caeckenbergh, Erik van Lieshout, Stan VanDerBeek, Danh Vo, Eugene Von Bruenchenhein, Günter Weseler, Jack Whitten, Cathy Wilkes, Christopher Williams, Lynette Yiadom-Boakye, Kohei Yoshiyuki, Sergey Zarva, Anna Zemánková, Jakub Julian Ziólkowski, Artur Zmijewski

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