The Philippines will participate in the Venice Biennale 2015 after a five decade absence.

The Philippines have not had a national pavilion at the Venice Biennale since their first and last participation at the Biennale’s 32nd edition in 1964. This 50-years hiatus and the sudden news of the country’s participation next year have sparked speculations and questions on why the Philippines are now returning and whether the country’s art scene is ready for such a big challenge.

The Department of Foreign Affairs communique states:

“After 50 years since the country’s first and last official participation in The 32nd International Art Exhibition of the Venice Biennale 1964, the exhibition of the Philippine Pavilion at the Venice Biennale 2015 aims to strengthen the role of the Philippines in the international community as a nation of and destination for contemporary art. ”

The return of the Philippines to the Venice Biennale in 2015 signals a bold and unwavering commitment to provide the opportunity and recognition to Filipino artists residing in and outside the Philippines and representing a wide range of mediums such as painting, sculpture, photography, installation, video and digital platforms, and performance.

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