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the classics

I am attending a drawing course right now: drawing in the museum and the last two session took place in the archeological museum. There, a lot of classic  statues from Greece or Roman, in all sort of poses, most of them naked, many of them broken. Drawing from a 3 D object is not easy. But looking at these classical statues helps to see a couple of things. One aspect: The beauty that underlies them, the human body as beautiful object, in perfect proportion.  Today's picture, a broken torso, might have been Atlas, holding the sky. I was doing a couple of sketches, from various angles.

Quite often, when thinking or dreaming about new perfumes, I am visiting the classics, too. We can learn from the fragrance classics and often, we do not need to go back too far. Just 30 years or 50 years from now. Like an older version of Fracas, a somewhat older Jicky version or a perfume "cuir de Russie" or a vintage version of Antheus, just to name a few. Here's the thing: I do not go downtown, to the mall, to visit what's out there. For sure not in order to learn or with an expectation to experience and enjoy what's out there. You cannot learn and find no inspiration there. I am personally totally convinced that industry has completely lost its way, and we are experiencing the same in "industrial niche" and this is the best that can happen to artisan perfumers. In that context:

I allow myself to copy one statement here, found on persolaise's blog, part 1 (of 2) of an encounter with Luca Turin in London a couple of weeks ago. I recommend reading the interview and what Luca Turin has to say about perfumery and perfumes. ..." So, it's David and Goliath, really. And considering that, it's amazing that artisan perfumers can do good stuff. And it also makes you think that, perhaps, the big perfume houses have lost their way."

6 thoughts on “the classics”

  • Thanks for the link to Persolaise's blog interview! I don't have any inside info on the perfume industry, but I do know that shortly after Guerlain was bought by LVMH , I was shocked that new batches of my favorite Guerlain perfumes smelled like a tinny echo of the original. It was not due to variations of natural materials but to composition because in most of the cases the depth and richness of the fragrance was gone and replaced with a "photo-copy" of the fragrance. So I went to Paris and started to search the independent perfume houses. I was happy to discover Particia Nicholai and Perfumes de Nicholai and Christian Louis of Parfums et Senteurs de Pays Basque and came home with a suitcase full of wonderful perfumes. I had a bit of a hiatus of several years and have been looking to see what is new in the industry and am thrilled to find Tauer Perfumes - knocked my socks off with delight! I have given up on Guerlain, I still have many favorites of Chanel and one of Hermes, but it is the independent perfumers, like Andy Tauer, that are making wonderful, exciting, rich creations that have my attention.

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  • Dear Andy and where you find older Jicky, "cuir de Russie", vintage Antheus and so on? - Such as ours, it is not very easy to do:-)
    I think the big perfume houses as well as artisan perfumers are looking for their way in making public the private collection where it is only marketing for big money, but where it really interesting work.
    The prohibition of many animal and plant components is the main problem - it's like an artist to take away most of the palette. For the consumer, it is difficult, especially for those who have recently begun to show interest in perfumery - they have no point of reference.
    I have long wanted to ask - perhaps you've written about this, but I do not remember if you can call (if it can be done), two works with the maximum and minimum number of components?
    I'm a big fan of Classics, and I like your work :-)

    have a big day

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  • Dear Andy - forgot to write, thank you for the links section persolaise's blog - a great interview!
    And I liked the words of Luca Turin for you, comparing the L'Air Du Desert Marocain Shalimar with very precise - I agree completely! ^-)

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  • Hi Andy, hi Vladimir
    At first I was wondering why L'Air du désert Marocain was at all compared to Shalimar. But they really share a much desired characteristic, they both evoke the sentiment and warmth of physical intimacy. Once smelled, never forgotten.

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  • Hi Stephan, I think, what is meant is not absolute similarity and likeness as a movement of thought and a kind of poetry, or direction, if the comparison is appropriate :-)

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  • Great interview on Persolaise's blog and nice comments from LT on LADDM. :-) Your sketch is quite impressive too!

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