rirkrit tiravanija - (who´s afraid of red, yellow and green)
(who’s afraid of red, yellow, and green) will be the Hirshhorn’s first-ever exhibition of works by Rirkrit Tiravanija. Organized by Mark Beasley, the museum’s Robert and Arlene Kogod Secretarial Scholar, Curator of Media and Performance Art, the exhibition will transform the Hirshhorn’s galleries into a communal dining space in which visitors will be served curry and invited to share a meal together. The installation includes a large-scale mural, drawn on the walls over the course of the exhibition, which references protests against Thai government policies. Additional historic images speak to protest and the present. The exhibition will also include a series of documentary shorts curated exclusively for the Hirshhorn by filmmaker Apichatpong Weerasethakul in collaboration with the artist. On view May 17–July 24, Tiravanija’s presentation unites his signature communal food-based work with his ongoing series of drawings derived from protest imagery, creating a unique dialogue within a single installation.
The culinary component of the exhibition will occur Thursday–Sunday, 11:45 am–1:30 pm or until supplies last, every week during the run of the exhibition.
Tiravanija’s career defies classification. For nearly 30 years, his artistic production has focused on real-time experience and exchange, breaking down the barriers between object and spectator. The title of Tiravanija’s culinary installation, which will be presented at the Hirshhorn for the first time since it entered the museum’s collection in 2017, (who’s afraid of red, yellow, and green), refers to the colors worn by the various factions in recent Thai government protests. The title also refers to the 1982 vandalism of Barnett Newman’s similarly titled painting in Berlin, which was motivated by the attacker’s belief that Newman’s painting was a “perversion” of the German flag. To soften Newman’s provocative title, Tiravanija uses parentheses and lowercase letters, suggesting that viewers answer the question as framed: “Who is afraid of what these colors symbolize?”