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EXHIBITION

REVIEW - Rirkrit Tiravanija At the Serpentine Gallery, Kensington Gardens, London, until 21 August

For this brief and extremely self-conscious retrospective Rirkrit Tiravanija, the current darling of international biennials, has installed two fully functioning replicas of his New York apartment, one the mirror image of the other, in the Serpentine Gallery, writes Morgan Falconer. The immediate impression is a pleasurably dizzying sensation of art and reality merging: in one of the kitchens, a woman was peering inside a pot on the stove, and it was hard to say whether what lay inside was sculpture or someone's dinner.

Tiravanija's work often carries the flavour of 1960s happenings, so it is no great surprise to fi nd another interactive installation, a jigsaw, representing a historic artist's performance in Hyde Park.

But, as ever, Tiravanija uses these devices to sketch a world where time and space are shrinking. As well as exhibiting his well-stamped passport, he has installed a radio station which will make a daily broadcast (on Resonance FM) of a play about two characters travelling through time in search of 'The Artist', who may or not have caused a global catastrophe. To fit the mood, the central gallery is dotted with plants and hung with old calendars, suggesting a space neither interior nor exterior, neither past, present nor future.

There is layer upon layer of meaning in the show; even the idea itself, a reframing of two other recent retrospectives, is self-conscious. Unfortunately, the impact is a little buried under all those layers.

Morgan Falconer is a writer based in London

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