Rirkrit Tiravanija
©Victor&Simon - Iris Millot

Rirkrit Tiravanija:

Parc des Ateliers
Les Forges
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In the early 1990s, Rirkrit Tiravanija (Thai, b. 1961) became renowned for cooking pieces that took place in galleries and museums, which both exhilarated and confounded audiences.

Since then, Tiravanija has continued to create “situations” that introduce smell, taste, touch, and waste —in other words, life and utility— into the sterile space of the white cube. In concert with these more ephemeral situations, he creates art objects and installations that trade in myriad forms of cultural translation and mistranslation: using multiple languages, appropriating imagery, restaging his own work, and constructing architectural replicas. Often citing art history, cinema, and vernacular Thai culture while folding in aspects of his own biography, Tiravanija puts forth open-ended proposals to generate “another notion of culture,” one less reliant on Western understandings of aesthetics and authenticity.

Titled A LOT OF PEOPLE, a frequent material line in many of Tiravanija’s interactive pieces, this exhibition encompasses works that invite the visitor’s participation, as well as sculptures, films, photographs, paintings, and works on paper. This major survey exhibition of Tiravanija’s practice brings together works made over four decades while living between New York, Berlin, and Chiang Mai (Thailand), and includes several pieces that have not been seen or experienced since their initial presentation. Critical to the recent evolution of the art scene worldwide, Tiravanija’s interdisciplinary approach engages with notions of cultural difference as well as parameters of place and the ways in which people come together.

Central to the exhibition are multimedia installations that emphasize concerns about politics, while critically reflecting on current social conditions around the world, the struggle to sustain democracy, and proliferating protest movements. Interactive pieces will be enacted during the exhibition in newly conceived presentations. In this manner, Tiravanija continues to reactivate and translate his own works into new pieces that can adapt into the future. He describes this ongoing evolution: “Like a good recipe, everyone knows what it is, what it tastes like and even how to make it again — perhaps even differently, following their own interpretation; or perhaps it would be a base for something completely different, a possibility.” 


"Rirkrit Tiravanija : A LOT OF PEOPLE" is organized in partnership with MoMA PS1, curatedy by Ruba Katrib, Curator and Director of Curatorial Affairs, MoMA PS1, and Yasmil Raymond, Rector, St.delschule and Director of Portikus, Frankfurt, with Jody Graf and Kari Rittenbach, Assistant Curators, MoMA PS1.

The exhibition at LUMA Arles is curated by Vassilis Oikonomopoulos, Director of Exhibitions and Programs.


Une heure, une expo (in French only)

For an hour, the mediators of LUMA Arles invite you to (re)discover the exhibition about Rirkrit Tiravanija. Each time slot is dedicated to a specific exhibition, enabling visitors to deepen their understanding of an artist's work through a detailed and enriching presentation.

July 5
August 2
August 30
September 27

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"We have to acknowledge that the important element of the whole situation is people." Victor & Simon

Portrait of Rirkrit Tiravanija, 2019
Photo © Mark Blower
Courtesy the artist and Pilar Corrias, London

Rirkrit Tiravanija

Rirkrit Tiravanija (b. 1961) is best known for his intimate, participatory installations that revolve around personal and shared communal traditions. At the forefront of the shift in avant-garde art practices in the 1990s away from traditional art objects and toward “relational aesthetics” that incorporate diverse cultural spaces, practices, and temporalities, Tiravanija has continually challenged and expanded the social dimension of art, inviting people from all walks of life to inhabit the personal and poetic spaces that he constructs and to communally engage in shared rituals and actions. Tiravanija was born in Buenos Aires. The son of a Thai diplomat, he moved frequently during his youth, growing up primarily in Thailand, Ethiopia, and Canada. He received his BA from the Ontario College of Art, Toronto, in 1984, and his MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 1986. From 1985 to 1986, he participated in the prestigious Whitney Museum of American Art Independent Study Program, New York. The artist lives and works in New York, Berlin, and Chiang Mai, Thailand.

Tiravanija has received major retrospective exhibitions at MoMA PS1, New York (2023); Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam, and Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris (2004; traveled to Serpentine Gallery, London); and Chiang Mai University Art Museum, Thailand (2004). Other recent solo exhibitions of Tiravanija’s work have been held at the Museum Dhondt-Dhaenens, Deurle, Belgium (2021); Glenstone, Potomac, Maryland (2019); and Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, DC (2019). His work has been featured in the Venice Biennale (1993, 1999, 2011, and 2015); São Paulo Biennial (2006), Whitney Biennial (1995 and 2006), and Paris Triennale (2012). Among his many awards and honors, Tiravanija was the recipient of the 2004 Hugo Boss Prize from the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation. The artist’s work is represented in public collections worldwide.


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