The Week in Art
Venice Biennale special: four artist interviews, main show review and a Bellini masterpiece
A Venice Biennale special: we give you a flavour of the 59th edition of the Biennale which, as ever, brings a deluge of contemporary art to the historic Italian city. We talk to four artists in the national pavilions – Francis Alÿs in the Belgian pavilion, Sonia Boyce in the British pavilion, Shubigi Rao in the Singapore pavilion and Na Chainkua Reindorf in the Ghana pavilion – about their presentations and how, if at all, they relate to the idea of nationhood. Louisa Buck and Jane Morris join host Ben Luke to review the main exhibition, The Milk of Dreams, curated by Cecilia Alemani, and pick their highlights of the Biennale so far. And while most visitors to Venice this week are immersed in contemporary art, for this episode’s Work of the Week, we take a look at a masterpiece that remains exactly where it was intended to hang. The art historian Ben Street joins Ben Luke in San Giovanni Crisostomo, a church near Venice’s Rialto bridge, to look at Saints Christopher, Jerome and Louis of Toulouse, a late painting by the Venetian Renaissance artist Giovanni Bellini.
Venice Biennale, 23 April-27 November.
Ben Street, How to Enjoy Art: A Guide for Everyone, Yale University Press, £14.99/$20.