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Venice Biennale bans Russian delegations amid Ukraine crisis

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The Venice Biennale, one of Italy’s top cultural institutions, announced Wednesday a ban on anyone linked to the Russian government in protest over the invasion of Ukraine.

“For those who oppose the current regime in Russia there will always be a place in the exhibitions of La Biennale, from art to architecture, and in its festivals, from cinema to dance, from music to theatre,” it said in a statement.

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“As long as this situation persists, La Biennale rejects any form of collaboration with those who, on the contrary, have carried out or supported such a grievous act of aggression.”

It said it “will therefore not accept the presence at any of its events of official delegations, institutions or persons tied in any capacity to the Russian government.”

The Biennale joins a growing number of cultural organizations dropping those considered to be close to Moscow following the invasion last week of Ukraine, Russia’s pro-Western neighbor.

The Russian Pavilion at the Biennale’s International Art Exhibition, which opens next month, has already been closed after its artists and curator pulled out in protest at the conflict.

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