The National Pavilion United Arab Emirates (UAE) la Biennale Di Venezia manages the UAE’s participation in various offerings of la Biennale di Venezia, which is considered by many to be the most prominent of exhibitions for contemporary art, architecture and film. The National Pavilion was established to endorse the UAE’s contemporary practices on an international platform and provide a foundation to support the nation’s diverse and developing cultural scene.
The UAE’s participation at la Biennale Di Venezia commenced in 2009 with a national pavilion at the 53rd International Art Exhibition, and has continued in subsequent editions since. Participation at the International Architecture Exhibition is marked with a debut pavilion in 2014.
Ahead of the 55th International Art Exhibition in 2013, the UAE was awarded with a historic long-term hospitality agreement (permanent pavilion) in the Arsenale – Sale d’Armi, providing the Emirates a platform to showcase visual arts and architecture for a period of 20 years. This commitment offers myriad opportunities for the UAE cultural scene to span art, architecture, film, dance, music, and theatre and ensure that UAE-based artists are presented at the forefront of international contemporary art.
The National Pavilion UAE was initiated by the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Community Development, who appointed Dr. Lamees Hamdan as Commissioner for the pavilion. She held this position from 2009 through to the 2013 participation after which the Salama bint Hamdan Al Nahyan Foundation assumed responsibility of the commissioner role.
National Pavilion also organizes the Venice Internship, a specialized program offering a range of training opportunities for young citizens of the UAE to get experience in the industry through a month long internship on-site in Venice acting as exhibition managers.