15 Satellite Shows You Need to See During the Venice Biennale
artnet news
Alyssa Buffenstein & Caroline Elbaor
5 May 2017

The Arsenale and Giardini are no longer the only must-see spots in town.

This May, Venice will once again undergo its biannual transformation, temporarily becoming the capital of the global art scene as members of the art world descend upon the city for the opening of “Viva Arte Viva.” The highly-anticipated 2017 Biennale, curated by Christine Macel, promises to pack a punch, with 120 artists slated to show their work in the artist-focused exhibition.

Along with the Biennale come the inevitable satellite shows—some officially partnered with the Biennale, others functioning entirely independently—with a list that seems to grow every two years. (artnet News’ Sarah Hyde reported on the phenomenon in February.)

2017 is no exception. There are, of course, the much-hyped biggies: Damien Hirst‘s shipwreck at the Pinault Foundation, Chris Ofili inaugurating Victoria Miro’s new Venice outpost, Carol Rama breaking a decade-long absence from Venice in an exhibition at Ca’ nova, and Philip Guston making a Venetian debut with the first museum show dedicated to his work in the city at the Galleria dell’Accademia.

But these four only touch the surface of what can be seen in the Floating City. Here, artnet News has rounded up 15 other exhibitions to add to your agenda.


7. James Lee Byars, “The Golden Tower“ at Dorsoduro, Campo San Vio, May 13 – November 26

 The show’s eponymous work is a sight to behold: standing at an imposing 66 feet, The Golden Tower is the largest piece ever made by American artist James Lee Byars, who passed away in 1997. In keeping with the late artist’s wish to eventually exhibit the tower in a public space, Michael Werner Gallery—which represents his estate—collaborated with Fondazione Giuliani to present the piece outdoors in Venice.