Tag: Venice Biennale

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Venice Biennale 2017 – Viva Arte Viva

Friday, May 19th, 2017 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

Ask people to name the most romantic city in the world, and Venice is usually at the top of the list – but there are dissenters. D.H. Lawrence said Venice was green, slippery and abhorrent, and he didn’t even have to contend with the crowds in the Giardini and Arsenale during the opening days of […]


Tracey in Venice

Saturday, May 13th, 2017 Blog,

Success at the Venice Biennale, the world’s biggest, most prestigious art event, may be measured in many different ways. One is the length of the queue that extends from the doorway of a national paviliion, making viewers wonder if they can bear to waste an hour standing in the sun. But hey, if so many […]


Tracey Moffatt

Friday, March 3rd, 2017 Blog,

“Make it up! Make it up!” says Tracey Moffatt when we start to talk about her background. “Miss Moffatt said: Go ahead and make it up. Give ‘em a great story.” It may be the era of post-truth and ‘alternative facts’ but I’m still not ready to fictionalise the artist who will represent Australia in […]


Australian Pavilion

Saturday, May 16th, 2015 Blog,

Venice has been thrilled by the idea of a new Australian pavilion in the Giardini, where Biennales have been held since 1893. There has been a lot of press and many photos, the favourite one showing the great black cube leaning out over the canal that bisects the exhibition area. One approaches the new building […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

56th Venice Biennale, 2015

Saturday, May 16th, 2015 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

“He’s very political.” This is what I heard, more than once, about Okwui Enwezor, the Nigerian-born curator of the 56th Venice Biennale, which goes by the suitably airy title: All the World’s Futures. This need not imply revolutionary credentials because “political” is a word with both macro and micro applications. Put three people in a […]


Fiona Hall for Venice

Thursday, December 5th, 2013 Blog,

For more than 20 years Fiona Hall has been the obvious, dead-set, undeniable first choice to represent Australia at the Venice Biennale. It is a testimony to the acumen of our arts bureaucracy that in 2015 she will become the first artist to occupy a newly-built pavilion. Any other country might have rushed her into […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Venice Biennale 2013: The Encylopaedic Palace

Saturday, June 8th, 2013 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

Every Venice Biennale is a talk fest – a place for the beautiful people of the art world to exchange opinions and business cards at endless parties. Unfortunately most of the talk is of a very tawdry nature: “I just loved the Ruritanian pavilion!” “Oh yeah, I loved it too!”  And so on, ad infinitum. […]

Art Essays

54th Venice Biennale

Friday, June 17th, 2011 International Art, Sydney Morning Herald Column,

Never has a more glamorous bag accompanied such a tawdry exhibition. A dazzling gold carry-all, advertising Hany Armanious’s installation in the Australian pavilion, was to be seen all over Venice during the vernissage of the 54th Biennale. The only more prominent bag may have been the bright red one with ‘Free Ai Weiwei’ emblazoned in […]


A terrible beauty in Venice, sort of…

Saturday, June 11th, 2011 Blog,

This much delayed blog comes from a train, speeding towards Aarhus in Denmark, where the second Danish Sculpture by the Sea is being held. I’ve just finished four exhausting days in Venice for the Biennale. Lest you think this sounds glamorous, I can’t remember when I’ve felt so zonked every evening. Too tired to write […]


I survived…

Thursday, June 2nd, 2011 Blog,

An exhibit in the Arsenale anticipates audience responses to this year’s show