Recently I took part in Yorkshire Artspace’s Open Studio event, which as ever attracted hundreds of visitors to my very studio. During the event I exhibited my usual array of scented delights and workshop promotional material.
I tend to use open studios to trial new bodies of work and new approaches to utilising scent within contemporary art practice in order to gauge an audience’s reaction. This year was no different as I displayed a range of necklaces with scented elements:
The overarching aim was to reveal the capacity scent has for storytelling; each necklace is based on a certain narrative, which has been interpreted through scent design and visual embellishment. These narratives range from Shakespearean quotes to Greek mythology.
Subconsciously, the necklaces have no-doubt been inspired by a collaborative trio of work designed by myself and Emilia Telese for our joint exhibition at BasementArtsProject, Leeds.
One of these pieces is a pomander that describes a certain utility for perfume historically. It also notes that, at one point in time, the notion of utilising a portable container to carry fragrance around in was a somewhat innovative concept.
I don’t know whether these scented necklaces will reach the point whereby they are formally exhibited, or whether they are even a body of work I will continue to make. But as a fine art perfumer seeking to uncover new ways of representing scent within art, they at least mark a distinct body of work.