A history of the Venice Biennale — The first short film in a series that celebrates the Venice Biennale digs into the rich history of the art world's most revered event.

Filmmaker Oscar Boyson has directed a five-minute video that sums up the last 120 years of the Venice Biennale, the most important art fair in the world.

The film – which makes a lot of the high-concept work feel accessible through pop references (this is where Madonna got on the gondola in Like a Virgin) – focuses on the most influential, or controversial, moments in the fair’s history and analyses how those moments have helped shape culture and even national identity.

This film is the first in a series of short films, Behind the Biennale, to be released in the run-up to this year’s Biennale featuring the stories of artists, curators, visitors, and Venetians.