Insignificants in September: Embedded, more or less

September’s insignificants are a montage of laughing gas canisters that I collected in Copenhagen August 2019. Like most other people, I had noticed the increasing numbers of laughing gas canisters thrown on the street. I decided to start a collection campaign in a span of two weeks, where I would collect every single canister that caught my eyes, regardless where they were located. Mostly, this meant stepping of the curb and pick up the canisters, while people passing by would look at me with a mixture of perplexity and suspicion. Occasionally, I had to run across main roads in heavy traffic.

Convincing people that the laughing gas canisters really were – and remained – insignificant was tough. Most people referred to the canisters as representative of substance abuse and pollution of the streets, so I decided to put their purported significance to the test. Accompanying the canisters in the exhibition case, I arranged twelve canisters individually in a jewel case and gave each of them a price tag (prices ranged from 150 to 8500 DKK, roughly 20 to 1200 Euros). Apparently, these canisters were not so significant that anyone bothered to buy one. I even accepted MobilePay.