Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, CA
Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY
Migros Museum, Zurich, Switzerland
The Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, MN
Saint Louis Art Museum, Saint Louis, MO
FRAC Languedoc-Roussillon, Montpellier, France
Gavin Brown’s enterprise, New York, NY
The cosmopolitan, international artist Rirkrit Tiravanija was born in Buenos Aires, the son of a diplomat and a surgeon, and has lived in Latin America, Europe, the United States, and Southeast Asia. His work has taken various forms and focuses primarily on social relations between and within groups of people. His installations, performances, and programs commonly rely on forms of open-ended audience participation and activism. His work is conceptual and has been central to the concept of "relational aesthetics" as theorized by the curator Nicolas Bourriaud in the 1990s.
During the 1980s Tiravanija studied at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and the Whitney Independent Study Program, among other schools. Starting in the 1990s, he began staging events in galleries wherein he would cook Thai food for visitors. These actions encouraged active participation and exchange, the audience being integral to the work rather than taking on a position of spectatorship and were sometimes combined with the distribution of recipes, encouraging the participants to extend and recreate the communion. Other projects have encouraged political protest or conversation and include architectural elements conducive to such events.
Tiravanija was the recipient of the Guggenheim Museum’s 2004 Hugo Boss Prize. He participated in the Whitney Biennial, the 50th Venice Biennale, the São Paulo Biennial, and others. He has also had major exhibiitions at museums including the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, and the Guggenheim.