Taking Venice

  • a man in a suit in front of a painting
  • three people on a boat with a painting
  • two men carrying a painting


Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema Fri, May 24 6:15 PM
Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema Sat, May 25 1:00 PM
Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema Sat, May 25 6:15 PM
Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema Mon, May 27 3:45 PM
Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema Wed, May 29 4:00 PM
Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema Fri, May 31 1:00 PM
Film Info
Country Listing:USA
Cast/Crew Info
Director(s):Amei Wallach


Uncover the true story behind rumours that the U.S. government and a team of high-placed insiders rigged the 1964 Venice Biennale so their chosen artist could win the Grand Prize.

At the height of the Cold War, the U.S. government is determined to fight communism with culture. The Venice Biennale, the world’s most influential art exhibition, becomes a proving ground in 1964. Alice Denney, Washington insider and friend of the Kennedys, recommends Alan Solomon, an ambitious curator making waves with trailblazing art, to organize the U.S. entry.

Together with Leo Castelli, a powerful New York art dealer, they embark on a daring plan to make Robert Rauschenberg the winner of the Grand Prize. The artist is yet to be taken seriously with his combinations of junk off the street and images from pop culture, but he has the potential to dazzle. Deftly pulling off maneuvers that could have come from a Hollywood thriller, the American team leaves the international press crying foul—and Rauschenberg questioning the politics of nationalism that sent him there.

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