“The Institute for Art and Olfaction aims to instigate greater engagement with the art and science of scent.” Such is the mission statement fashioned by founder and native Angeleno Saskia Wilson-Brown. She had an extensive background in media production and distribution before trading it in to pursue her newly-acquired passion for perfumery, and scents in general.
Saskia discovered that places to study perfumery were nonexistent, or required affiliation with a company sponsoring an academic program in order to be admitted. In addition, the creation of scents are shrouded in secrecy prior to being patented. “A few secret multinationals run by an army of chemists create most of the perfumes,” she notes.
From a studio which is part laboratory, part classroom, and event space, she engages participants with all things related to the art of making scents, encouraging experimentation. Programs encompass hands on workshops, residencies, and special projects that integrate various disciplines from scientific data to art. Collaborative efforts are developed between perfumers, scientists and other creative practitioners.
The intent is to expand the world of scent beyond traditional boundaries of appreciation and use, elevating the art, science, and philosophical discourse of olfaction. No other public institutions in the western U.S. to support the practice. Go here for more about eclectic L.A.