Vol 1 No 1 (2020)
Why Venice?

Towards a Contemporary Venice Biennale: Reassessing the Impact of the 1993 Exhibition

Clarissa Ricci



− Abstract

This paper argues that Cardinal Points of Art, directed by Achille Bonito Oliva has been decisive in the formation of the contemporary Venice Biennale. The 45th Venice Biennale, (1993) was memorable for many reasons: the first exhibition of Chinese painters in Venice, its transnational approach, and because it was the last time the Aperto exhibition was shown. Nevertheless, this was a complex and much criticised Biennale whose specific characteristics are also connected to the process of reform that the institution had been undergoing since the 1970s. The analysis of the exhibition starts with the examination of this legacy and continues by questioning Bonito Oliva’s curatorial contribution in order to define the specific features which helped to shape the contemporary Venice Biennale.

− Keywords
Venice Biennale, Aperto 1993, Achille Bonito Oliva, Nomadism, Coexistence, Contemporaneity