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Installation 46: The Smell of Work

No longer a smell of success but a quiet, revolt to the culture of work is emerging amongst Chinese youth. The ban wei, the smell of work is a new term invented by the youth to amplify the notion of being over saturated with and in someways infected with work. The smell of work is not a positive thing, in fact it marks a rejection of work, which is new to a historically workaholic affirmative culture.


Described as evolving “the bitter taste of iced Americano coffee, the stench of sweat, the lingering scent of cigarette smoke and the whiff of “dangling a carrot” symbolizing empty promises from the boss.” In effect ban wei is the smell of burnout. It is most prominent in the morning commute, and


If one is marinaded in ban wei, the recommendation is to wash it off by taking a break of work and/or developing hobbies outside of work.






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