Organisers of the 22nd Biennale of Sydney, which in 2018 drew more than 850,000 visitors from Australia and overseas, say the event will go ahead as planned despite the worsening COVID-19 crisis.

However, they are monitoring developments daily, and reserved the right to make alterations to the planned schedule for the three-month event.

Sydney Biennale director Brook Andrew.

Sydney Biennale director Brook Andrew.Credit:Tim Bauer

In a statement, organisers said the event, which opens this weekend at a range of locations including the Museum of Contemporary Art, the Art Gallery of NSW and the National Art School, was “one of the most important cultural events of 2020”.

“Nevertheless, we understand there are concerns regarding coronavirus and its impact on the biennale,” continued the statement. “We continue to work closely with the City of Sydney and all our exhibition and event partners to ensure attendees are safe.”

To reassure visitors, extra hygiene precautions have been introduced, including regularly wiping and disinfecting door handles, lift buttons, handrails and bathrooms.

There will also be hand sanitiser stations placed around the venues.

Museums and galleries around the world, particularly in virus hotspots such as Japan and Italy have closed their doors in a bid to restrict the spread of the virus.



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