Italian film producer Roberto Cicutto named president of Venice Biennale

Il Presidente

Italian film producer Roberto Cicutto named president of Venice Biennale

Roberto Cicutto will help shape the upcoming Venice Architecture Biennale, among his other duties. (Italo Rondinella)

Roberto Cicutto has been named the new president of the Venice Biennale, the parent organization of the biennial architectural showcase and its sister events in art, film, dance, and music, and theater. Dario Franceschini, the Italian minister of culture, appointed Cicutto to the prestigious role which has been long-held by Paolo Baratta.

The 71-year-old former film producer most recently served as the head of Luce Cinecittà, Italy’s state-owned film producer and distributor that aims to promote original Italian cinema around the world. Born in Venice, Cicutto founded several companies including Mikado Film, Aura Film, Sacher Distribuzione, and Ermanno Olmi—the latter through which his The Legend of the Holy Drinker won the Gold Lion Award at the 1988 Venice Film Festival. From 2009 to 2014, Cicutto also led the film market at the International Rome Film Festival.

Cicutto’s appointment comes just months ahead of the 17th Venice Architecture Biennale, which is slated to start in May. His first task as president of the overall organization will reportedly involve appointing a new director of the Venice Film Festival. Alberto Barbera, the current leader, has been in the position for a second time since 2012.