8 Jun 2009

Venice Biennale opens

4:28 pm on 8 June 2009

The Venice Biennale - the world's oldest and most high-profile contemporary art exhibition - opened its doors to the public on Sunday.

It was founded in 1895 to celebrate new developments in international art.

It has been described as the Olympic Games of the art world - 77 countries are showcasing the work of their leading artists. All are hoping to win the top prize - the Golden Lion.

Among the works on show are installations by New Zealand artists Judy Millar and Francis Upritchard.

Carla van Zon from Creative New Zealand says visitors have been very impressed by the works on display.