A History of Venice Exhibition

The Venice Institute of Contemporary Art and Venice Heritage Museum present “A History of Venice,” a People/Place/Art/Word/Sound Exhibition opening September 3 at Beyond Baroque in Venice, CA, and continuing through September 30. The lobby and mezzanine galleries will showcase installations that highlight the diverse and influential histories of Venice through the lens of its inhabitants — from the indigenous Tongva population, to Abbot Kinney and his wild fantasy come true to create a playground for the Los Angeles elite, to the artists, activists, and renegades who have made their home in Venice and their mark over generations. The displays, interpreted by a diverse array of guest curators, honor a sampling of the many groups that have contributed to the cultural depth of this immensely influential beachside community. In particular, the exhibition seeks to center the Venetians whose influence may be known to insiders but whose legacies are at risk of being forgotten during this time of rapid cultural change.

An accompanying suite of special live evenings of storytelling, media, and performance will kick off on September 5th with a night of behind-the-scenes storytelling about Venice’s complex and fascinating history, told by local residents themselves as well as devoted historians. On September 14th, the official Opening Reception for the exhibition will be held from 2-6 pm. Following, an evening talk will feature Tosh Berman sharing excerpts from his new book about his father, influential Venice artist, Wallace Berman, and readings of works by Venice scribes such as one-time resident, Ray Bradbury, and beloved poet, Wanda Coleman, with other special guests to be announced. A film night will take place on September 19th, which will feature rare archives from the gritty surf and skate culture of Dogtown’s second generation in the 1980s. Films by the youth of Venice Arts will be shown, as well as a selection from the noted archivist, Tom Sewell, among other shorts. The final gathering on September 29th will open with an indigenous ceremony and blessing to provide good luck and wishes for the continued cultural evolution of the city of Venice and its residents. The evening will conclude with a variety show in the evening, featuring performances by the many wonderful and talented characters of Venice, both past and present (…who knows, Abbot Kinney himself might appear!). Proposals and ideas for three-minute variety acts will be accepted up through September 4th at ahistoryofvenice@gmail.com. All in all, the program promises to be a moving and entertaining, not-to-be-missed celebration of the cultural legacies of Venice, a city so many lay claim to and yet still defies definition.


“Venice was… (and still is) a last stop-off at the edge of America …oceans and outlaws. Its setting is a perfect balance for poetry. Beauty and danger. Agony and rapture.”
-Philomene Long


“Nobody’s out of place in Venice”
– Ronald Shusett


The ongoing exhibition will be housed in the lobby, mezzanine, and upstairs gallery during regular hours at Beyond Baroque. The onsite bookstore will feature a display devoted to the literary and poetic history of Venice. All evening programs will take place in the Beyond Baroque theater.

Public viewing hours:
Friday 4:00-10:00 pm
Saturday 3:00-10:00 pm
Sunday 2:00-7:00 pm

Exhibition on view from September 3rd-30th

Event pricing:
$10 GA / $6 Seniors / Free for Beyond Baroque members.

Free admission to the Opening Reception and Closing Ceremony

To RSVP for the opening reception + buy tickets to our live events visit: linktr.ee/ahistoryofvenice

For more information about “A History of Venice” at Beyond Baroque, please contact Juri Koll at ahistoryofvenice@gmail.com or 310-957-7037. Visit facebook.com/veniceheritage1905 andfacebook.com/VeniceICA for ongoing updates.

Source: Venice Heritage Museum