Born in les Alpes-de-Haute-Provence in 1941 by the time Venet reached 18 years old he was employed as a stage designer for the Nice City Opera. By 1965, he had the opportunity to exhibit his work in the Paris Biennial. The following year, he created a ballet, ‘Graduation’, to be danced on a vertical plane and began making new work based on the use of mathematical diagrams. Venet continues to cross over into other forms of expression besides visual art throughout his career, inlcuding film, dance, theater, and poetry. He resides in both France and New York City.
For a period of five years, from 1971-1976 he ceased making artwork. However in 1977 Venet reemerged and a series of exhibitions soon followed. In 1989 he was awareded the Grand Prix des Arts de la Ville de Paris. In the mid 1990s Venet was invited to exhibit his ‘Indeterminate Line series’ on the Champ de Mars near the Eiffel Towe. This exhibition kicked off a world tour of Venet’s sculptures and in 1996 he was awarded the honor of “Commandeur dans l’ordre des Arts et des Lettres” by the Minister of Culture in France. Also during this time he continued to explore in both film and in written work.
His work contines to be exhibited throughout the world. Most recently, he exhibited in the 55th Venice Biennial and installed ‘88.5° Arc x 8’, a 27-meter tall sculpture on Gibbs Farm near Auckland, New Zealand. In 2013 the French Postal Service will issue a commemorative stamp of the artist’s 22-meter ‘Vertical Arcs’ that were exhibited at the Château de Versailles in 2011.