"Ellena is proud to be an illusionist. “Picasso said, ‘Art is a lie that tells the truth,’ ” he told me. “That’s perfume for me. I lie. I create an illusion that is actually stronger than reality. Sketch a tree: it’s completely false, yet everyone understands it.”"
-Jean-Claude Ellena from "Annals of Innovation: The Scent of the Nile," The New Yorker,
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[caption id="attachment_2625" align="aligncenter" width="300"]
Nile River at Sunset[/caption]
If you missed our post yesterday about the New Yorker
article which details the creation of Hermès's perfume Un Jardin sur le Nil, be sure to check it out here
. After reading all about the creation of a fragrance based around the Nile, we couldn't help be start googling in search of images of Egypt. Condé Nast Traveler
didn't let us down, with this gorgeous shot of the Nile at sunset. Definitely a destination that's on our bucket list!
Last week we stumbled upon a fantastic article about perfume making from a 2005 issue of The New Yorker. "Annals of Innovation: The Scent of the Nile"
details the creation of an Hermès perfume, Un Jardin sur le Nil (translation: A Garden on the Nile
), and provides a fascinating insight into the incredibly complicated world which is perfumery.
From debates about how to create a signature across a line of perfumes to listings of the countless iterations which Hermès perfumer Jean-Claude Ellena created and tested before settling on the final formula for the "juice," the article details exactly how difficult it is to do what perfumers do.
Finally, the overall piece serves as a reflection on the different ways in which perfume is incorporated into major fashion houses, like Hermès. Hermès and Chanel both have in-house perfumers, allowing them to create a body of work that is cohesive and completely in line with their brands concepts. Many other larger houses and big name perfumes (such as celebrity perfumes) outsource their perfume factions, turning to external companies who employ master perfumers to create their scents. While this second tactic has been known to turn out some very successful fragrances, there is no cohesion, no authenticity or truth behind the perfume which links it to the ultimate message of the brand. By using the model found in niche perfumery, Hermès was able to create a body of perfumes which are distinctly Hermès and which represent all of the elegance, glamour, and class for which their brand is known.
Read the whole article here