Cinderella Venus goes to Venice!

This past year has been a difficult one for me and unfortunately it has meant that my blog has not received as much love and attention as it deserves and I have been unable to visit as many exhibitions as I would have liked. However, by the end of Summer things started to improve and I was able to go on a trip of a lifetime to Venice.

I have always wanted to go to this historic city of canals which is absolutely packed full of art. As readers of this blog may have sussed out, the art that captures my heart is contemporary and to my luck, the Venice Biennial was being staged this year, and I was in for a treat!

To go into an in-depth explanation of everything my eyes were treated to would take a lifetime. I don’t want to bore you with any inane details so I will briefly sum up my favourite parts of the festival and why I would recommend visiting this beautiful island:

Venice itself is absolutely stunning. The narrow canals flowing into one another with glorious gondolas floating through them are like something out of a story book. Despite being loaded with tourists even in the middle of September, you cannot help drawing yourself in to the magnificent St Mark’s Square which is a feast for the eyes in every corner. You could just stand in the centre in amazement for hours and not get bored with all there is to see.

Of course my favourite part of Venice was the Biennial. The city has been taken over by contemporary art from all over the globe. The celebration of the contemporary centres at the Arsenale, however pavilions are scattered all over Venice. To be honest my favourites were those outside the Arsenale, which had been staged in historic buildings with ceilings covered in traditional Italian frescos and old churches. These locations which are then paired with cutting edge and modern art are wonderful juxtaposition which are a dream to take in. I was most impressed by the many Chinese pavilions as well as those from the Middle East, particularly Lebanon.

Visiting Venice was a surreal experience. It caters for lovers of history and those in search of the new. It was unforgettable.

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Lizzy Vartanian Collier aka Gallery Girl is a writer and curator based in London. Her work has been featured in publications including Dazed, Hyperallergic and Vogue Arabia. She was curator of Perpetual Movement during AWAN Festival 2018 and in 2019 had a residency at the Lab at Darat Al Funun in Amman, Jordan. She has also worked with Armenia Art Fair for its inaugural edition and previously worked as an editor at I.B.Tauris Publishers. In 2019 she co-founded Arsheef, Yemen’s first contemporary art gallery. She has given workshops at Manara Culture in Amman, Jordan and Victoria and Albert Museum in London, UK. As of 2020 she is currently in law school, with the ambition of greater understanding the intersection between art and the law.

2 thoughts on “Cinderella Venus goes to Venice!

  1. Great written piece “Cinderella” ..I loved Venice only from the water looking back onto it..and away from all the tourists of which James and I were.
    We took multiple ferries to gaze back onto Venice and also got the cool breeze and other islands to peak at as well..St Marks square was great at 6am as it was only us there !

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