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Trousse activites rirkrit


Activities for all ages.

Illustration: Marie-Fei Deguire

The PHI Foundation for Contemporary Art presents the exhibition Rirkrit Tiravanija: JOUEZ/PLAY from March 9 to July 9, 2023.

Activity Kit presented by the PHI Foundation’s Education Team

Kim Johnson
Prakash Krishnan
Marilou Lyonnais Archambault

Head of Education:
Marie-Hélène Lemaire

Hello! It is our pleasure to offer you an Activity Kit for the exhibition JOUEZ/PLAY by artist Rirkrit Tiravanija.

This activity kit is addressed to children and youth as well as the adults who share their lives.

The kit accompanies the exhibition JOUEZ/PLAY

This exhibition presents contemporary* participatory works by artist Rirkrit Tiravanija. Through his works, Rirkrit hopes that we, the visitors, can come together and participate in his works together.


*What does contemporary art mean? The word “contemporary” means “now” or “of the present day.” Contemporary art is art created by artists who are alive now or who lived in the recent past.


When a sound reverberates and is carried along through time and space, it is called resonance. Resonance is why, for example, in a cave, you can sometimes hear a voice echoing in the distance. Rirkrit’s untitled 1996 (rehearsal studio no. 6) is an actual rehearsal studio, with musical instruments that visitors are welcome to pick up and play. Sound waves (music) spread throughout the gallery and resonate within the bodies of visitors who are walking around and looking in on the rehearsal.

Artist Rirkrit Tiravanija creates works of art that make us rethink what a work of art actually is. His works aren’t coveted objects of contemplation, but rather places to encounter and interact with others. Rirkrit’s untitled 2017 (skip the bruising…) for example, is an installation in the form of a bar, a welcoming space for people to get together and hang out in. The bar “set” also includes a small stage where visitors can perform “art” of their own.

Activity 1

Make a tonoscope


Theme: Resonance

As part of our exploration of resonance, we’ll be making a tonoscope, which is an instrument that lets you actually see sound vibrations in action.

Resonance is when a sound is picked up and carried along through space and time. Resonance is when you hear your voice echo around you in a cave for example.

To make a tonoscope, you will need to create an echo chamber with a tube for the sound to enter through and a membrane on top that you’ll cover with salt.

Materials: A plastic flower pot; two cardboard paper-towel tubes—one short, one long; a white marker; a pair of scissors; a hobby knife; a big balloon; a cardboard strip; tape; coloured markers; and salt.

Step 1: First, trace a circle with the white marker on the side of the flowerpot, using the end of the cardboard tube. Then, trace another circle on the side of the shorter cardboard tube.

Step 2: For all the steps that call for a hobby knife, ask an adult for help to make sure it’s done safely.

Start by cutting out the bottom of your flowerpot with the knife, leaving a narrow border. Cut out the circles you drew in Step 1 so that you can stick the end of a cardboard tube into the holes.

Then, take your scissors and cut the end off of the big balloon.

Step 3: Decorate the cardboard tubes any way you want using the coloured markers.

Step 4: Use both hands and stretch the balloon across the wider end of your flowerpot.

Now stick the end of the short tube into the hole in the flowerpot and then stick the end of the long tube into the hole of the short tube. Don’t push it in too far, or the sound might not get through.

Use tape to plug one end of the short tube. The tubes carry the sound into your tonoscope.

Step 5: Make a circle around the rim of the flowerpot with the coloured paper strip and tape it.

Then spread a couple of small handfuls of salt on top of your tonoscope.

Step 6: Hold your mouth up to the tube and see what happens when you sing and talk into it. Try making lower and higher sounds.

You’ll see all kinds of different patterns forming as the salt moves to the vibrations and resonates with the sounds you make.

I hope you have lots of fun doing this project with your friends or family, at home or at school.

Activity 2

Fabulation Card


Theme: Encounters

This activity is called “Fabulation Card.” Fabulation is when you imagine and talk about things as if they were real. It’s kind of like talking about the plot of a movie featuring fictional places and characters.

Materials: A computer and printer; cardstock paper for printing the postcard template; scrap paper; a pen; some magazines and newspapers; scissors; a glue stick; and a postage stamp.

Step 1: Use your cardstock paper to print the postcard template found here.

Step 2: Now’s time to fabulate! For the “mood board” option, you can make a collage on the front of the postcard using pictures inspired by your mood and interests. Cut or tear pictures out of magazines and newspapers and arrange them on the fabulation card. Once you are ready, glue them into place. And voilà, you now have a mood board.

Step 3: Once your mood board is finalized, think of someone you would like to send it to and write their address on the back of the card. Add your postage stamp and put it in a mailbox.

Step 4: The person receiving your card can now observe the mood board and write something on their own card based on the scene you fabulated.

*If you would like to do this activity in a class setting, you can divide your class into two groups. The first group will create the mood board and the second group will write responses after observing the creations. To conclude the activity, you can talk about the themes and similarities explored during the activity and observe the way our mood affects the way we interpret words and images.

Thank you for fabulating with us. Have fun!

Send us your creations!

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