Wednesday, June 30, 2010

No One Has Ever Smelled ...

Frédéric Malle:

I dream of
new molecules bringing
scents that no one
has ever smelled.


Painting: Indigo Lura Astor

Saturday, June 26, 2010

28 June 2010 UK Launch = Orange Star

Somebody said to me,
'So, can you talk to me about Orange Star?'

And I said, 'No. You have to work it out for yourself'

- Andy Tauer, creator of Orange Star

Tauer, ".... perhaps, the purest form of a perfume is the numbers in an Excel formula. They are constant and immutable. They resist the wispy subjectivity of different people's skin, of the varying olfactory autobiographies of each and every one of us." 

from Persolaise: Read more here

photo: Orangers d'Andalousie - Granada  Paul Munhoven

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

The Place of Scent

The Place of Scent

Then I went to where scent discovers all its harmonies.

Here is the dark red perfume of the rose; the drowsy quiet of bean-fields in the dusk; the gentle death of autumn in deep woods; and the clean smell of ploughland after rain.

The friendly wood-smoke of a cooking-fire; the satisfying smell of baking bread; the earth-forgotten green of new-cut grass; the moon-drunk sweetness of night-blooming flowers.

The warmth of clover murmurous with bees; the sleepy peace of avenues of limes; the tuberose’s languorous caress; the chill austerity of alpine flowers.

The yellow warmth of primroses at noon; the scent of water running over stones; the lonely sorrow of the river mist; the smooth white smell of linen, and of snow.

The dusty wisdom of papyrus rolls; and the warm spice of cedarwood and myrrh; the hot impatient smell of spikenard; and tarnished silver’s half-remembered dreams.

The clear sharp energy of lemon rind; the lovers’ ecstasy of orange trees; the melancholy smell of winter nights; and hyacinth’s azure echo of the spring.

The salty challenge of wind-driven spray – that wander-urging message of the sea; the gentle memories of sun-dried flowers the still abandonment of fields at noon.

The moth-winged purple of new gathered grapes; the easy laughter of a jar of beer; the excitement of a gallop-sweated horse; and the proud splendour of the manes of lions.

The acrid keenness of a copper sword; and the brave smell of torches in the wind; the musky pomp of ceremonial robes; and the solemnity of bitumen.

Here can our nostrils so delight our hearts that we forget colour and are blind to sound.

- Joan Grant, from Winged Pharaoh 1937

photo: Los Olivos, California  Lura Astor

Monday, June 21, 2010

Notes, Chords, Accords

… Peace to the heart with touch or word,

Ease to the soul with note and chord …

- Vikram Seth  An Equal Music

Illustration: Beautiful Triangle Lura Astor

Friday, June 18, 2010

Tangy Whiffs


A tangy whiff of disgruntlement wafted on the fetid air.
I smelled like a rained-upon, nervous sheep.

- Julie Powell, Julie and Julia: My Year of Cooking Dangerously

photo: Sheep (and lens) in the Rain Kenneth Allen

Friday, June 11, 2010

The Century of Odour? The Nose has Gained Stature

I think it's an interesting area to look at because essentially,
the investigation of the olfactory
is the investigation of everything else.

- Hans Rindisbacher, author of The Smell of Books: A Cultural-Historical Study of Olfactory Perception in Literature, and more, here

Scent as the Seat of the Soul

Gustav Jaeger, author of Origins of the Soul, a zoologist, physician, and contemporary of Charles Darwin, "reportedly reckoned that scent was the seat of the soul".



The Transparent Citizen

"Yes, they've been collecting human scents to trace anti-globalisation activists they believe may try to disrupt the G8 summit in June. They have been confiscating sweaty vests and getting well-known radicals to impregnate steel pipes with their hand odour to present to their German shepherds."

- Rindisbacher


"Oh, a number of people have called the twenty-first century das Jahrhundert des geruch, the century of odour. The nose has gained in stature. This gain is reflected, for instance in a more aggressive stance by the perfume industry and the exploding artificial fragrance and flavour business. I think the first newspaper reference I saw to the social implications of environmental fragrancing systems was in the 1990s, in the Wall Street Journal. In it, executives of a leading fragrance manufacturer acknowledged that smells of the future could be potent enough to put smell suppliers in competition with the pharmaceutical industry." - Rindisbacher

 From Amber Marks' book
Headspace: Sniffer Dogs, Spy Bees and One Woman's Adventures in the Surveillance Society

more on Odour Clues & Odor Clue Collectors!
chapter 25: The New World Odour
read full text here
Alternative book cover image here

Stasi Smell Jars mentioned in book 

Big Stinky  Huntington Library and Gardens
My DNA press photo
GDR Duftproben Stasi
Smell Jars Appaloosa 2009
G8 Protest Sam Fentress, Edinburgh 2005
Clues Syker Fotograf

Friday, June 4, 2010

Can't Run But

A cooling system
Burns out in the Ukraine
Trees and umbrellas
Protect us from the new rain
Armies of engineers
To analyze the soil
The food we contemplate
The water that we boil

I can't run but
I can walk much faster than this

-Paul Simon Can't Run But from Rhythms of the Saints 1990

cityscape: lastor