February 15, 2013 AT 12:49 am

Chinese artist works at Foxconn as performance art

Chinese performance artist Li Liao worked for forty-five days in a Foxconn factory assembling iPads for Foxconn. At the end, he used his earnings to purchase an iPad. The results are part of a group exhibition at the Ullens Center for Contemporary Art in Beijing.

As an exhibit, he put the iPad on a pedestal, tacked up his uniform and badges, and framed his contract. The effect, on a white gallery wall, is a strangely addictive ready-made tableau about the intersection of money, aspiration, and technology.

Read more at Evan Osnos’s Letter From China blog.

As someone who is both a consumer and manufacturer of electronics, I think this is an interesting artwork. There is a lot of controversy over manufacturing in China, and I am much more interested in Chinese responses to the subject rather than from, for example, fabulists such as Mike Daisey.

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