The press conference for the Venice Biennale, arguably the world’s most important contemporary art event, takes place three months earlier and is usually quite a  confusing affair.

Not this time.


Here’s a foretaste of what the 57th Venice Biennale, curated by Christine Macel, otherwise known as the chief curator of contemporary art at the Centre Pompidou, will have to offer.

She’s opted for a title that borders on a song lyric: ‘Viva arte, viva arte, viva arte’. Three times.

There’s no Biennale without courage,’ underscores Paolo Baratta, President of the Biennale.

Christine Macel outlined her plans for the Biennale, which she will be directing without any collaborations from other curators. ‘That’s how I always work, on my own.’

There will be 120 artists, 103 shown for the first time at the Venice Biennale.

She granted me an interview in private as she ‘s a reader of the blog.

 #The main objective:
‘The world has become more complex, and so too has art. I would like the public to get closer to the artists’ practice, understand it. On the website and at the Biennale, there will be artists talking about their practice in 30-second to 5 minutes videos.’


#Artists today

We overconsume on artists, then forget about them too quickly. There will also be artists who are not young and deserve to be rediscovered.’


#Art, what for?
Art doesn’t change the world. It is the place where it can be reinvented.‘ 


# How do you choose who to include with the sheer volume of artists out there

‘I have an inner filter. Something happens. It’s a proposition that stirs you, that excites you.’

# The art market
‘There is a positive consequence from the art market omnipresence, which is to make art more popular, and there’s a negative consequence: it transforms art into a luxury object.’



 ‘I too want pleasure from art. I am physical, instinctive and bodily in my relation to art. Of course I am cerebral too.’

#Unknown artists

‘Evidently, for those who only view contemporary art at the fairs, there will be a lot of unknown artists. The Biennale is the fruit of my research since 1995‘. 

#What the Biennale should be

A connected wandering. As you move from one work to another the progression, you will progressively understand the approach being taken.’


Here is the list of artists selected by Christine Macel:


And from the website of the Biennale artists showing their practice:

In the studio of Abdulla Al Saadi


Nevil Aladag



From 13 may until 26 november.

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