Christine Macel, the director of the 2017 Venice Biennale, states of the Biennale:
The Biennale is anything but free of the powers that govern world affairs.
Most of the artists represented are sponsored by national governments, or arts organizations supported by those governments.
The Biennale features government pavilions dedicated to promoting nationalism. Credit for the work in these pavilions is given to the “Commissioners”, with the artist gaining last-place credit.
In some cases, the artist has no association with the country except as the recipient of sponsorship. In others, the artist was born in the sponsoring nation, but no longer lives there. When the artist is sponsored by their adopted country, that country’s promoted image is as a “nation of Immigrants”.
Christine Macel has been director of the Centre Pompadou, and her resume reads like someone who is totally a part of the government system.
The organization is controlled by government surrogates who select the work and how it is shown. It is not controlled by artists.
The Biennale is totally about art dominated, sponsored and selected by “the powers that govern world affairs”, or their surrogates.
Within this constraint, it is amazing that the art (on the whole) is of quality.