Designing perfumes for place: scent, memory, recollection, richness + experience

Creating sensate holism in place-making
Color, perception, light — happiness in moment — personal voicing of story and gathered re-collection, all impact the moment of scent, the waft of an instant, reclaimed and recalled.

summering scents — could be: wood | salt water | heated earth | bark, freshly curled | split stone | peeled cedar | crushed pine | hot asphalt and creosote — mountain wind and mist:
Designing perfumes for place: scent, memory, recollection, richness + experience

What about you, the scent of summer?

You know that I’m insanely obsessive about scent, the art of perfume to the laughable degree that the study of it — the reasons why, for perfume and the complex layering of ingredients has long ago — taken over my life, my place. And, you’ve all made that observation.

I smell everything — sampled, tagged, noted and sorted in mind and the palace of memory.

What is all that stuff?
Bottles, boxes, essences — booklets on scent storytelling, shopping bags — the holistic accouterments of the holistic telling of story and sale, the magic of the bottled art of fragrance. And indeed, it is the realm of the apothecary, the rooms and vials of the alchemist — the markers of the library of the scentual.

There is magic there since it is so inherently personal — the raw interpretation of ingredients is founded on levels of skill, the clarity of the scenting nose [how trained, how well exposed] and the vibration of the experience — happy, tense, clinical or artfully celebrating?

That study continues, of course — more perfumes boggle, vials proliferate, the shelves and working counters downtown and home — books architect new piles of arrangements, new towers of knowledge appear. I’m certain that I’ll never give up the study of scent — but shall likely continue to evolve the how [the research and exploration happens] and the why [the motivations, psychically and otherwise, of the orientations of research] of it.

Why does this scent have such a deep voicing for me — hot summers, the heat in the pines, water warmed at lakeside and the swaying grasses and mud nearby. Surely, any reader could conjure up a magical scent scape built on a memory.

Think of it — a story, a time, a recollection — dream: “what is the smell of that moment?”

A hummingbird smelling an island bouquet.
Designing perfumes for place: scent, memory, recollection, richness + experience

Friend, Tracy Pepe, a perfumer from Canada has been building a business wrapped on the notion of scent-making and place. A potent need, yet a relatively undefined and unknown art [“scent this place please, kind of like my home, when I was growing up…”] — still, it’s a de rigueur proposition — ‘have place, will scent” — to the support of the “premise” and the promise shared of the environment. It’s been done — many brands have already defined their scent strategies. She’s been doing these workshops and perfumed expositions, mostly Canadian, creating events about introducing people to the idea of scent in place-making.

This one event — noted below — is about the scent of “black.

What’s compelling, in this instance, is the meaning of the story. Her storytelling on, and to, this brand voicing is interesting [because of the personal realness and — scent-making as a journey that is inextricably linked to her personal experience. Personal experience might be defined as: what is held, recalled and embraced — and carried out, and through, that journey.

When you travel in the heritage of your mind, your life — what are the larger recollections [re-collection] that you “hold” and carry out?

The scent of darkness, the black night:
Designing perfumes for place: scent, memory, recollection, richness + experience
Moonrise, Decatur Island

As Tracy offers — designing the scent of blackness: “It is an incredible journey, it started when I was diagnosed with cancer last year. And the darkness of my life transformed my spirit – it is my favourite aroma… I am well now, but the process was very powerful for me.”

She notes her journey of contemplation, meaning and construction of essences:

(the element with a rectangular shaped energy) is experienced as the colour of dark green — and the aroma of black spruce, which eases fear, aggression and anger.

(wavy), is brought to life by the colour of dark blue and expressed through the scent of blue chamomile, which helps to ease insomnia, depression and oversensitivity.

(triangle) is presented through the colour Purple and the scent of birch tar, which helps to ground people and to ease discomfort.

(round) is conveyed as the colour reddish brown and the aroma of black currant, the sensual and exotic essence that eases tension and inspires sexuality.

Earth and stone
(square) are captured in the colour of deep brown and the smell of myrrh, known for its association with spirituality and its influence on meditation and prayer.

Each of us has friends, artists, family members who have experienced the transformative assault of cancer. And each will have their path to making peace with — and in, and through — this overtaking.

I found Tracy’s meditative process in building a fragrance to guide her in these times of travail to be remarkable — sharing worthy.

Herewith, then., the share. Below — Blackness, scent defined and explored to be shared.




Designing perfumes for place: scent, memory, recollection, richness + experience

BLACKOUT FEST is an Interactive Art Festival open to every form of art. This season we are showcasing rising talent in various media, including, film, theatre, fashion, photography, DJs, solo artists, bands, sculptures, paintings, poetry, and installations. Artists are tied together by a central theme, The Ultimate Question. Answering their own question, artists explore the answer in their work and present it in an interactive way which the observer can experience and become a part of.

Tracy Pepe has been asked to scent the opening night with the smell of black – a true artistic impression.

Your are invited to smell, another great scented space by Nose Nows Design. To purchase your tickets,visit http://www.ticketmaster.ca/Blackout-Fest-tickets/artist/1757195

Please visit www.blackoutfest.ca for the event calendar and artist line-up