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The soup kitchen in "Rirkrit Tiravanija - Fear Eats the Soul" at Gavin Brown’s Enterprise, New York 2011, photo courtesy the artist and Gavin Brown’s Enterprise
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by Jerry Saltz

On Wednesday, two young artists took the movement known as Relational Esthetics for a joyride. The artist Rirkrit Tiravanija, whom I’ve discussed before, has long explored the rich terrain of giving things away for free, of making interactions with art and other people possible, and of sharing. In his current show, he has upped the ante. Setting up a soup kitchen that provides soup for a dollar a bowl, he’s removed all the walls and windows of Gavin Brown’s gallery, thus doing something Relational Estheticians have been carrying on about for decades: he’s rendered indoors and outdoors the same thing -- in this case leaving the gallery open to anyone who wants to do anything, anytime.