Charlotte Grayland: My Top Art Picks outside the Venice Biennale

Charlotte Grayland, who has just finished her first year in Fine Art, is one of three CSAD students taking part in the Arts Council of Wales Wales in Venice Invigilator Plus programme, spending a month at the Wales Biennale helping invigilate CSAD Fine Art lecture Sean Edwards’ exhibition at the Wales Pavilion. Charlotte also has time allocated to develop her creative practice, explore the Biennale and seek inspiration from everything that the city has to offer. Here’s her report from week 3:

 When visiting Venice for the Biennale it is quite easy to get caught up in visiting just the Arsenale, Giardini, and collateral events. However Venice hosts many other wonderful art galleries and museums to be discovered. If you still haven’t had your art fix, then these are the places to go.

Here are my top picks for Art outside the Biennale:

  1. Punta Della Dogana

The Punta Della Dogana is one of my favourite places in Venice. Its current exhibition Luogo E Segni, curated by Martin Bethenod and Mouna Mekouar is curatorial genius, highlighting both the magnificent art and sublime architecture of Giuiseppe Benoni. The Gallery’s location, situated where the Grand Canal meets the Giudecca Canal, allows for some of the best views in Venice from both inside and outside the building. Tickets here also allow entry into the twinned gallery of Palazzo Grassi. Who doesn’t love more art?

  1. Peggy Guggenheim Museum

If you want to see modern art from the greats this is the place to come. Featuring works from Kandinsky, Magritte, Mondrian, Pollock and Picasso to name a few, it is a feast for the eyes. With the amount of world famous art at home here it is no surprise that the museum becomes quite busy, with multiple tours and groups navigating through the space. To avoid the crowds blocking your view, I suggest visiting outside of peak hours to get the best experience. The Guggenheim is legendary and once visited, you’ll know why.

  1. Sean Scully “HUMAN” – Church of San Giorgio Maggiore

Sean Scully’s free exhibition (running from 8 May- 13 October) on the island of San Giorgio is a must see. The island’s famous Basilica acts as a stunningly beautiful backdrop for Scully’s selection of abstract block paintings and drawings. His main sculptural piece “Opulent Ascension” is breathtakingly bold; a large scale multi-coloured felt tower placed in the centre of the abbey.

  1. Gallerie dellAccademia

As well as featuring one of the collateral events of the Biennale (a great exhibition of Georg Baselitz), the Gallerie dell’Accademia is full of beautiful classical artworks. The Gallery hosts paintings and sculptures from the Venetian Renaissance period as well as the Baroque, neo-classical and romanticism eras. The building itself is also heavily embellished, and I can guarantee that you will find yourself as bewildered by the ceilings as much as the artwork. This Gallery is the perfect place for those who want a break from the volumes of modern art.

These suggestions are only scratching the surface of the countless venues available to you in Venice. So go and explore, get lost, and I am sure you will find some incredible art.