Owen F. Smith

Canned Chance Project

Net Art and online documentation

The Canned Chance Project is an online catalogue of flattened cans found on the roadside that were picked up and catalogued over a seven-month period. The project is, at its most basic levels, a way of playfully rethinking both chance- and data-based art. On a more specific level this project is a way of investigating the socio-cultural aspects of ”casual refuse” disposal by creating a chance based database of human interactions of the built environment and to enact two levels of the Duchampian paradigm: chance operations and designation as art making.

Owen F. Smith (Bangor, Maine, USA) has been investigating the boundaries between art and life since 1958. He is currently the Director of the Intermedia MFA Program and the Innovative Media, Research and Commercialization Center at the University of Maine. He is a specialist in Modern and Contemporary art, particularly what he calls alternative art forms. His seminal book on the history of fluxus, Fluxus: a History of an Attitude, was published by San Diego State University Press. He is also a producer of multiples and media works through which he seeks to question the traditional art object and established art practices. His work has been exhibited in over 80 national and international exhibitions over the last ten years.