The 57th Venice Biennale opens to the public on Saturday 13 May and runs until Sunday 26 November 2017. With up to 500,000 international visitors each year, the Venice Biennale is one of the longest-running cultural festivals in the world. The huge exhibition is held every two years at a number of venues across the city. So vast is the Biennale that trying to work out what to see is a daunting task.

IBTimes UK presents a preview of the works on show in some of the 85 national pavilions.

Venice Biennale 2017
The British pavillon, presenting work Phyllida BarlowAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
Phyllida Barlow poses in the British pavillonAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
The British pavillon, presenting Phyllida BarlowAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
The British pavillon, presenting Phyllida BarlowAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
Visitors admire a part of the art piece titled Folly by Phyllida Barlow, in the British pavilionVincenzo Pinto/AFP
Venice Biennale 2017
Erwin Wurm poses at the Austrian pavillonAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
The Austrian pavillon, presenting Brigitte Kowanz and Erwin WurmAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
The Austrian pavillon, presenting Brigitte Kowanz and Erwin WurmAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
The Austrian pavilion, presenting Brigitte Kowanz and Erwin WurmAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
The Austrian pavillon, presenting Brigitte Kowanz and Erwin WurmAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
The Austrian pavillon, presenting Brigitte Kowanz and Erwin WurmAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
The Austrian pavillon, presenting Brigitte Kowanz and Erwin WurmAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
The Australian pavillon, presenting My Horizon by Tracey MoffattAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
The Australian pavillon, presenting My Horizon by Tracey MoffattAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
The Australian pavillon, presenting My Horizon by Tracey MoffattAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
The German pavillon, presenting Anne ImhofAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
An actress performs in Faust by Anne Imhof, in the German pavilionVincenzo Pinto/AFP
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
Faust by German artist Anne ImhofVincenzo Pinto/AFP
Venice Biennale 2017
Imitation of Christ by Italian artist Roberto CuoghiVincenzo Pinto/AFP
Venice Biennale 2017
Imitation of Christ by Italian artist Roberto CuoghiVincenzo Pinto/AFP
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
The Russian pavilion, presenting Theatrum Orbis by Grisha BruskinAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
The Russian pavilion, presenting Theatrum Orbis by Grisha BruskinAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
The Russian pavilion, presenting Theatrum Orbis by Grisha BruskinAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
The Russian pavilion, presenting Theatrum Orbis by Grisha BruskinAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
The Russian pavilion, presenting Theatrum Orbis by Grisha BruskinAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
The Russian pavilion, presenting Theatrum Orbis by Grisha BruskinAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
Grisha Bruskin poses at the Russian pavilionAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
The American pavilion, presenting Tomorrow is Another Day by Mark BradfordAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
Mark Bradford speaks about his project Tomorrow Is Another Day, at the American pavilionAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
Oracle by Mark Bradford, in the American pavilionAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
The american pavillon, presenting Tomorrow is Another Day byf Mark BradfordAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
The Canadian pavillon, presenting Geoffrey FarmerAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
The Canadian pavilion, presenting Geoffrey FarmerAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
The French pavilion, presenting Studio Venezia by Xavier VeilhanAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
The French pavilion, presenting Studio Venezia by Xavier VeilhanAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
The French pavilion, presenting Studio Venezia by Xavier VeilhanAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
The Northern Countries pavilionAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
The Northern Countries pavilionAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
The Northern Countries pavilion, presenting Siri Aurdal, Nina Canell, Charlotte Johannesson, Jumana Manna, Myllymaeki and Mika TaanilaAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
The Hungarian pavilion, presenting Peace on Earth by Gyula VárnaiAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
Zsolt Petranyi and Gyula Várnai pose in the Hungarian pavilionAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
The Greek pavillon, presenting Laboratorio di dilemmi by George DrivasAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
Curator Orestis Andreadakis and artist George Drivas pose at the Greek pavilionAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
The Greek pavillon, presenting Laboratorio di dilemmi by George DrivasAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
The Egyptian pavillon, presenting The Mountain by Moataz Mohamed Nasr EldinAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
The Romanian pavilion, presenting Apparitions by Geta BratescuAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
The Spanish pavillon, presenting ¡Únete! Join us! by Jordi ColomeAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
The Finnish pavilion, presenting The Aalto Natives by Erkka Nissinen and Nathaniel MellorsAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
Wendelien Van Oldenborgh poses in the Dutch pavilionAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
Mario Sagradini poses in the Uruguayan pavilionAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
The Polish pavilion, presenting Little Review by Sharon LockhartAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
The Belgian pavilion, presenting Dirk BraeckmanAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
The Belgian pavilion, presenting Dirk BraeckmanAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
Lee Wan poses at the Korean pavilionAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
Visitors attend the Korean pavilion, presenting Counterbalance: The Stone and the Mountain by Cody Choi and Lee WanAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
Cody Choi poses at the Korean pavilionAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
The Korean pavilion, presenting Swan Song: Now by Jana ZelibskaAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
The Korean pavilionAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
The Korean pavilionAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
The Korean pavilionAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
Visitors attend at the Japanese pavilion, presenting Turned Upside Down, It's a Forest by Takahiro IwasakiAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
Visitors attend at the Japanese pavilion, presenting Turned Upside Down, It's a Forest by Takahiro IwasakiAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
The Japanese pavilion, presenting Turned Upside Down, It's a Forest by Takahiro IwasakiAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Venice Biennale 2017
The Japanese pavilion, presenting Turned Upside Down, It's a Forest by Takahiro IwasakiAwakening/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
The Israeli pavilionMarco Secchi/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
Jesreel Valley in the Dark by Gal Weinstein in the Israeli pavilionMarco Secchi/Getty Images
Venice Biennale 2017
El Al by Gal Weinstein in the Israeli pavilionMarco Secchi/Getty Images

La Biennale di Venezia dates back to 1895, when the first International Art Exhibition was organised. It has become one of the most important international cultural institutions in the world, introducing hundreds of thousands of visitors to the latest developments in contemporary art every two years. The 57th Biennale, directed by Christine Macel, chief curator at the Centre Pompidou, Paris, runs from 13 May to 26 November 2017.