How much information can one receive from an artist in less than thirty minutes? Plenty, if the artist happens to be Thomas Hirschhorn. The thousand words gathered on this page are but a small fraction of the verbal barrage that was set loose with a click of my tape recorder and a few questions about Critical Laboratory, 1999, which the artist installed at the BildMuseet in the Swedish city of Umeh in late November. One of the more ambitious contributions to “Mirror’s Edge,” an international show organized by Okwui Enwezor in that small town on the northern outskirts of Europe, Hirschhorn’s complicated piece struck me as deeply personal yet of global application. The simultaneity of the various sensations passing through the brain at a given moment isn't easy to capture in an artwork, especially if the brain in question is so hyperactive as to be processing on parallel channels the poetry

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