Dis-assembling (2022)

While iPhones seem ubiquitous now, they are particularly pervasive in the lives of over a million Foxconn factory labourers. The user demand seems indifferent or incapable of imagining the realities of the factory workers producing the celebrated design product. Dis-assembling presents a series of works aligning Chen Yu Wang’s personal stories and reflections surrounding Foxconn factories in Asia to their strict bodily systematization. Simple questions come to mind. Do you know how the iPhone is made? Is this question ever prompted by holding an iPhone? What is the story behind “a phone screw” and what metaphorical meaning does it stand for? Can we disassemble the idea of capitalism through dreaming?

          48 Stories Behind iPhone
Eindhoven, The Netherlands

Textile Art

Synthetic Fabric, Threads

L:45xW:55 cm each piece

Factory Laborer is not a pleasure topic, and it can be confronting. But why? It is daily life of millions and millions of factory worker behind every product we consumed. I decide to using light textile as welcoming invitation for audiences in the west who are not familiar with factory labourer in the East. Every story is hand embroidered inside the machine stitched iPhone silhouette. Before changing anything, I decide to only make the truth visible as a starting point to raise awareness of laborers behind iPhone.

          The Bunk Bed 
Eindhoven, The Netherlands

Textile Sculpture

Felt, Wool Yarn, Cotton Fabric, Silk

L:83xW:45xH75 cm

According to Pun Ngai, a sociologist who is specifically researched in Foxconn’s labour condition, described in her research that the dormitory is an extension of assembly line,to maximize worker’s efficiency under production. The bed is directly link to one’s mental health, yet for Chinese rural migrant worker, the bed is another home for a long period of time, the home should be cared. Pay attention back to bed, slowly construct it using a felting needle, as holding delicate screw driver for the given duty. Take the autonomy back, exchange the hours to work for capitalism into working for true living essential- sleep, as a way to protest.

           Re-edition: A Screw Drops to the Ground
Eindhoven, The Netherlands


Xu Lizhi suicided in 2014 October in the building of his dormitory. The day after his death, a pre set message published with title” A NEW DAY” on his blog. It was not an accident but his deliberate choice. I want to pick up the screws gently and make workers labor and life visible, by translating his famous poem in to english and textile and share to western audience.
           Dis-assembling: iPhone, Foxconn, Laborer,and the User
Eindhoven, The Netherlands


Screws, single size bed, fabric

L:210xW:113xH:40 cm

Dis-assembling: iPhone, Foxconn, Laborer,and the User is a documentational archive. Open up the metal box, take each page out,and unwrap different sections to undergothe research from images to stories inside Foxconn. The archive remains partially void, as the empty spaces act as a reminder forthe author and audience to engage with the topic continously. 

©Chen Yu Wang