Shifting Platforms: The Venice Biennale and the Formation of the Contemporary Art System


Getty/ACLS Postdoctoral Fellowships in the History of Art


Culture del Progetto


The Venice Biennale is one of the world’s most important exhibitions of international contemporary art since 1895. From this vantage point it’s possible to investigate the changes in the exhibitionary system after World War II: a crucial moment when the contemporary art ecosystem, as it is currently known, was crafted. The Venice Biennale’s responses to such makeovers epitomized this new course. In those years, the Biennale was completely reformed and transformed from a proto-fair international exhibition into a platform for contemporary art. The project thus aims to explore the crucial pathways towards the formation of the contemporary art system and to correct a flawed image of the role of the Biennale.