What? – Yes, that’s what he said!

Rirkrit Tiravanija

Behind this t-shirt with Rirkrit’s portrait on it is a whole story that took place at Palazo Flangini during a dinner hosted by Rirkrit called ‘Pop-Up Venice’. At that very night a whole crew of Purple Magazin was there ….. well…. this is how Matt Haber put it down in writing:

From May 25 to June 1, 2013, Rirkrit Tiravanija created a Pop-Up Kitchen at the Bauer Hotel in Venice, Italy where, as part of the Venice Bienniale, the artist hosted one of his signature mind-body gap bridging food and communion Happenings.

While everyone present happily partook in the food and companionship check out these smiling, well-fed art lovers courtesy of France’s Purple magazine, one attendee took it as an opportunity to express some firmly held beliefs about the murderousness of… tofu.

Here, a friend of Station to Station, shares a story from deep within Rirkrit’s kitchen:

One of the nights we had to cook for 120 people, and of course we knew some would be vegetarian so we got prepared making each dish with a tofu/veggie version.

One of the servers came to the kitchen and said, “There is one vegetarian but he doesn’t eat tofu.” We are cooking for 120 people so you can imagine how hectic the kitchen is at this moment and we have to come up with 5 new dishes (it was a 5 course dinner) for this person.

No one wanted to deal with this and of course I go out to see the person and said, “Hello, we want you to enjoy dinner, so please let me know what you eat and what you don’t eat so we can prepare something.” He said, “It’s OK, just give me anything that you have vegetarian.”

I said, “Well everything has tofu but I hear you don’t eat tofu?”

He said, “Yes, I don’t eat tofu. Tofu kills people. I just eat vegetables.”

I went to the kitchen and told everyone what he just said. We started laughing and I happened to take a picture of the moment.

The photo can be seen above. The slogan—”TOFU KILLS PEOPLE”–was made into a T-shirt for the crew so that they never forget the very real danger.

We’re proud bearers, having created this very t-shirt. You can buy it here directly from us very soon - don’t pay too much on ebay for it.

Photo of Cecilia Dean taken by Elise Gallant at Doug Aitken’s ‘Station to Station’ opening where Rirkrit was part of.