Definition of biennale in English:



  • A large art exhibition or music festival, especially one held biennially.

    • ‘France, like other countries, faces an accelerating globalization of the contemporary art market thanks to a proliferation of art fairs, festivals and biennales that take place around the globe.’
    • ‘I believe that it can, but only to the same extent that the Council's small sums of cleverly spent money help British artists become known outside the UK - at biennales, for example.’
    • ‘This biennale, which is only eight years old, hopes to give importance to every kind of art currently being practised.’
    • ‘There will be a commercial art fair in Melbourne later this year, and a biennale in Sydney mid-year.’
    • ‘Other than that, I know about the controversies surrounding the last biennale.’
    • ‘There were many criticisms of and towards the project but I believe as a tool for exposure both biennales did a world of good for South African art.’
    • ‘Several other biennales have been instituted on the Venice model, some of them general and others devoted to a specific category of art, such as naive painting or printmaking.’
    • ‘There hasn't been a biennale or a competition where the new wave of French posters hasn't been appreciated.’
    • ‘The artist exhibited in International biennales in Asia, America and Europe.’
    • ‘The inclusion of a cartoon/caricature exhibition in a biennale of fine arts might come as a surprise - perhaps an oddly hilarious one - to many art buffs and critics.’
    • ‘The loan exhibition at the Asian biennale is a private collection of fibulas mainly from the fifth century B. C., showing how Chinese craftsmen used gold and silver as well as assimilated the introduction of cast iron.’
    • ‘That's what I generally like to do, and I probably spend more time going to documenta and biennales than I do going to book fairs.’
    • ‘This past fall, an exhibition independent of the biennale made the connective leap between historic Venice and contemporary architecture.’
    • ‘Conceiving environments filled with effects, many of the biennale architects were designing ephemera.’
    • ‘Shanghai was the first Chinese city to host the biennale in 1996.’
    • ‘Festivals of contemporary art (whether biennales, fairs, or ‘projects') have their uses.’
    • ‘We were able to put together an insightful dialogue pertaining to the politics of the biennale vis - vis the concerns of the artists.’
    • ‘Notwithstanding, it takes a good deal of thought to achieve such a transformation, and it is an ability purportedly in demand but sadly lacking in supply within the framework of most biennales.’
    • ‘We are not a biennale, we are not an art fair, but we can give an opportunity to artists to make work on a stronger platform; for galleries to talk to artists they might not otherwise be able to.’
    • ‘He was invited to the International print biennales in Paris, Tokyo and Lugano.’
    display, public display, show, showing, presentation, demonstration, showcase, mounting, spectacle
    View synonyms


1930s (used originally as the name of an international art exhibition held in Venice): from Italian, literally ‘biennial’.