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Contemporary Art in Venice – Three Not-To-Miss Exhibits in 2020


Contemporary Art in Venice – Three not-to-miss Exhibits in 2020

Home to the famous Pinault Collection, Palazzo Grassi and Punta della Dogana give contemporary art enthusiasts the opportunity to see art surrounded by art. With frescos in the stairway by Michelangelo Morlaiter and Francesco Zanchi, Palazzo Grassi was the first to be reopened by art collector François Pinault, followed by Punta della Dogana. After successful installations as a part of the Venice Biennale, they continue to be beacon of artistic innovation in Venice with three new exhibits opening March 22.

The first floor of Palazzo Grassi will host the exhibit Henri Cartier-Bresson: Le Grand Jeu. The exhibit is curated by photographer Annie Leibovitz, film director Wim Wenders, writer Javier Cercas, conservator Sylvie Aubenas, and collector François Pinault. Known for his hard-hitting news photography, Cartier-Bresson photographed some of the world’s most significant events, including the funeral of Mahatma Gandhi. Focusing on the ‘Master collection’ of 385 photographs he chose himself, curators selected 50 of these photographs to share their perspective on the importance of this one-of-a-kind artist.

Egyptian artist and photographer Youssef Nabil’s subjects are varied; from Sting to Catherine Deneuve. The exhibit Youssef Nabil: Once Upon a Dream invites visitors into his journey as an artist. From his distinctive technique of hand-coloring his prints to his film work, curators Matthieu Humery and Jean-Jacques Aillagon create thematic selections of this living artist’s work occupying the second floor of Palazzo Grassi.

The relationship between the gallery and artist Thomas Houseago begins another collaboration with curators Caroline Bourgeois and Muna El Fituri. The result: a site-specific exhibition Untitled, 2020, that triggers emotional, sensory, visual and tactile connections at Punta della Dogana. Featuring Houseago’s studio recreated in the heart of Punta della Dogana and with works of more than 60 artists held by the Pinault Collection, international museums and private collections that are sources of his inspiration. Works from Marlene Dumas, Robert Colescott, Saul Fletcher, Llyn Foulkes, Deana Lawson, Paul McCarthy, Arthur Jafa, Joan Jonas, Edward Kienholz, Senga Nengudi and Gilberto Zorio are included. 

The exhibits run through January 10, 2021, except Untitled 2020 which will close December 13, 2020. Guided tours of the exhibits that encourage in-depth exploration and discussion are available. Customized and private tours are also available, contact Cultural Italy to secure your spot.  


Jennie Olson Six
Content Writer Cultural Italy