The Venice International Art Exhibition, often called simply the Venice Biennale (La Biennale di Venezia), is one of the oldest, most important and prestigious international art exhibitions in the world.
The Venice Biennale was born in 1895, in order to stimulate the artistic activity and the art market in Venice, from the initiative of a group of Venetian intellectuals led by the mayor of the time, Riccardo Selvatico, who, with the resolution of April 19, 1893, proposed to set up a biennial national artistic exhibition.
The first editions were held in the Palazzo Pro Arte, then in the Italian Pavilion, and now in the Central Pavilion, near the Giardini della Biennale, in the Castello district.
As early as 1907, a number of other buildings began to rise around the Palazzo Pro Arte, the National Pavilions, created by famous architects in the style of the most diverse world architectures.
In 1930, the Biennale became an independent organization dedicated mainly to the promotion of new European artistic trends. In that same year, for the first time, the Contemporary Music Exhibition was held, followed two years later, in 1932, by the most important and famous film festival in the world – the Venice Film Festival.
In 1980, the first edition of the International Architecture Exhibition of the Venice Biennale was held under the direction of Paolo Portoghesi, opening for the first time the space of the Corderie dell’Arsenale di Venezia, used since then for the art exhibition. The Art Biennale takes place in odd years, alternating with that of Architecture.
From January 2008, the President of the Biennale is Paolo Baratta, an economist and an Italian ex-minister.
VENICE BIENNALE 2019, the 58th International Art Exhibition, will take place between May 11 and November 24. For almost seven months, the pavilion located in Venice Giardini and the whole city of Venice will host numerous artistic events.