Saturday, January 28, 2012

Christophe Laudamiel at Dillon Gallery NYC

After a disheartening perfume crawl at the beautiful AEDES, I felt my spirits lift again as I found myself walking with anticipation way west on 25th street to drop-in at the Dillon Gallery in Chelsea to see Christophe Laudamiel's scent sculpture installation, entitled, Phantosmia-all but the smell. I missed his Green Aria, a few years back, so I was happy to finally connect. Immediately upon entering the spacious gallery I was struck by the grandeur and rare complexity of a scent that was wafting against me as I climbed the stairs, its inspiration:  Marlene Dietrich. There are 7 olfactory experiences in total, and Remembrance of Things Lost, Dietrich's scent appropriately is the only one that gets to roam the gallery freely. The rest are kept in tents that you walk into. Laudamiel asks us to close our eyes and breath normally as we enter these olfactive highlights of his perfumery career. My friend and I were half way through the installation when we heard that Mr. Laudamiel was in the gallery, and after introducing myself to this master perfumer I was taken by his unassuming and friendly manner. He was of course working and fine tuning his scent sculptures to make sure they were (pumping) just the right amount of juice for the weekend. He also assured me that each tent prevented any fragrance from escaping, and thus possibly mixing with others. The other tents are entitled, At you own Risk: A Crusade to Save the World Olfactory Heritage, The Banana and the Monkey, Fear, Fragile, The Whip and the Orchid, these, along with Dietrich's all have an element of defiance, and a desire to keep the sanctity of perfumery and to make fragrances that counter and challenge the fragrance industry's mores, as it is frowned upon to use certain raw materials as a perfumer or regulations make some restricted. Lastly, The Last Virgin, inspired by Patrick Süskind's book and film, Perfume: The Story of a Murderer, is one of my favorites of the show, it infuses steamed milk, pumpkin seed, and "molecules similar to that of the biological structure of red-heads." Unbelievable, right. Laudamiel promises to make many more versions of this one. If you are in NYC, I urge you to go see these scent sculptures and have your own experience, it's open for a few more days, until February 1, 2012. Don't miss it.

Read about Laudamiel's scent opera in New York Magazine here,

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

My Tribute List of Perfumes for Pina Bausch

Hi Everyone:
I finally managed to sneak out and see my first film of the New Year. PINA: A Film for Pina Bausch. Wim Wenders' tribute film that gives us a glimpse of the choreographer by weaving her dynamic choreography along side poignant confessionals, sometimes longing, sometimes joyful, by her grieve stricken dancers. Bausch passed-away suddenly right before Wenders started filming. There are many amazing moments in the film that celebrate her choreography, and the use of 3-D technology has finally found its purpose with Dance. At times, you can almost feel yourself breathing and walking with the company. The film manages to catch a glimpse of the heightened reality of performance (watch the trailer below). After the film, I thoughtfully began to construct my tribute list of perfumes for Pina Bausch, inspired by the film and its portrait of her, her dancers and dances...  It goes like this.

Sottile 1.61 YOSH    
An ethereal and buoyant, yet steady exhale of Muget and Tea Rose, thoroughly modern, how did she do that? Beauty and Magic combined.

Eau De Campagne  Sisley   
Expansive and green, next time take a Tomato Leaf and press it in between your thumb and index finger, inhale deeply, and catch a glimpse of Campagne.

(untitled)  Maison Martin Margiela Parfums   
Green, twiggy, earthy-Green, twiggy, earthy 
(repeat intended)

Chamade  Guerlain   
The fluttering heartbeat of Hyacinth and Blackcurrant 

KIKI  Vero Profumo 
A mentholated dose of Lavender meets a golden nutty sweetness, creating dissonance, harmony, and finally a cadence. A wild and bold statement with a fine dry-down. 

Here's the trailer for PINA: A Film for Pina Bausch