Angelo Orazio Pregon Interview: Peety by O’Driu 2013

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Interview by Azar

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Hello APJ,
In a recent APJ post, Peety, the new fragrance by O’DRIÙ, drew critical comments from almost every direction.  Some people were amused or repulsed by the idea of adding their own urine to a perfume. Others were wary of O’DRIÙ’S marketing strategies.
Until Peety came on the fragrance scene in 2013, many of us had never heard of the niche house O’DRIÙ or of its creator/perfumer Angelo Orazio Pregoni.  My first experience of Peety was a 1ml virgin sample purchased from Surrender to Chance.  I discovered that my skin was in love with Peety and I couldn’t  understand what an addition of urine could possibly contribute to what I perceived as already golden, animalic and spicy perfection.
Today I am excited to have the opportunity to ask questions and speak with the perfumer himself.  Thank you so much, Mr. Pregoni, for visiting us here at APJ.
Peety O`Driu FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

Your company name O’DRIÙ is an anagram derived from the Celtic word for “oak” and “druid” and you have described yourself as a shaman. How have these images of magic and ritual shaped your creative process and the evolution of O’DRIÙ as a niche brand?
Indeed, the brand name O’DRIÙ comes as a crasis of two words: “duir” – the keltic word for oak, and “vir”, a latin word which stands for “sapience”. But, as you know, the same Pliny “the elder”, described as the Druids performed the “ritual of oak and mistletoe” in its “Naturalis Historia”
Druids were the connecting elements and the depositaries of the keltic culture, one of the few connecting element in this people, so socially and politically divided.
After such an extraordinary length of time, Europe is a socially and politically divided nation, and I thought about a brand name which could symbolize an international vision on perfumery, an European and unifying one, which not necessarily had to go after French perfumery clichés.
So, O’DRIÙ wants to dig up ideas and concept that transcend the mere perfumes production!
Druids not only were like nowadays priests, they were philosophers, scientists, teachers and mentors also.
Somehow, I also wanted to transcend today’s perfumery boundaries, proposing an ancestral paradigm about smells, and opposing my knowledge and art rooted vision against the mass-market. I’m fighting to throw away “classical” banalizations which seem to rule the fragrances world.

Is there a perfumer (living or dead) whose work you especially admire? Who or what has influenced your decision to use scent as an artistic medium?
Giovanni Paolo Feminis, which is widely acknowledged as the very creator of “ACQUA MIRABILIS”. Looking at some of my production techniques I feel myself as I was a ‘700 perfumer. These were the days when one could, and it had to freely create! Raw materials were a few, so it needed to do one’s best, using each and every creative resource, as well as production tools and techniques. This is the scenario in which great intuition and great ideas come to life!
I also feel to be close to the Pierre François Pascal Guerlain modus operandi: as Guerlaine did, I also started creating “su misura” (bespoken) fragrances; only time will tell the O’DRIÙ business size, still it seems true to me that O’DRIÙ is an important linkage between the past and the future.

Who or what has influenced your decision to use scent as an artistic medium?
Art, in its most sublime meaning, is the aesthetic expression of human inwardness. My need was to depict the inner universe of the human being, going beyond every denomination, in a non-aesthetic and non-retinal way. My artistic vocation has been influenced by my background, my closeness to so many artists, I could say my DNA and my uselessness, because –first of all- an artist is useless, that is to say “vain” and yet dramatically fruitful.\

Do you wear fragrance? This seems an odd question but I’ve been told that some perfumers rarely, if ever, wear anyone’s perfume.
Oh yes, my perfumes, specially the newest ones, that I’m near to launch: I want to understand how they “live” on my own skin! I don’t wear perfumes when I’m working at the laboratory. Sometimes I run something like a “social experiment” wearing an “antisocial fragrance” which I created for me: it creates a certain repulsion that –absurdly- seems to become fascination when the one who is speaking with you discovers that you are a “Nose”. At that time the incredible happens: this person “wants” to love my perfume, just because he knows about me. It’s like having a mystic fragrance: a different and a mysterious one!

Peety Angelo Orazio Pregoni FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

O’DRIÙ releases fragrances strictly as limited editions. Is this solely an artistic decision or are there practical considerations as well?
Creating ultra-limited series of perfumes is –at the same time- a sign of craftsmanship and a way to push in the market my vision about the perfume exclusiveness.
Fashion stylists change their collections and this continuously regenerates their style. I never understood why perfumers don’t act in a similar way, proposing their fall/winter or spring/summer collections! Indeed, it seems that there is a tremendous lack of creativity in Noses, so they pretend their creations are “eternal poems”, while this is only a sluggish marketing strategy.

How does the availability of natural materials play into the creation of your perfume?
Nowadays, raw materials are available every day of the year. Yes, it’s possible to have even huge variations in prices, but the problem is not the availability one. My perfumes come to life in my mind: I don’t need to smell anything, and I don’t permit to materials to influence my creativity. I use materials, I bend them to my needs, not the opposite. I could use some basil and bergamot and just another essence to create a great perfume: may be oxidizing part of the basil with sunlight, or burning a part of the bergamot essence while freezing the other part…
At this point I could play, yes: play, feigning most common odors…
And the third essence could be pure and precious, this could be enough to create a great perfume: technique overcomes every unavailability.

Since its inception in 2011 O’DRIÙ has released 19 fragrances (that’s a lot!). What do you see in the future for O’DRIÙ (the company) and for your own vocation as an artist and perfumer?
A lot of them simply are expired… but you should add four more perfumes from the Perfhumance performance, then “Supercilium con una C” and “Subcilium” which came from “Mise en Abyme”. Sometimes, when I go back to smell them, I’m surprised. I’d want to regenerate some highly costly concepts, as the JMT (Jasmine Mean Time), in a inexpensive fashion, but without renouncing to quality! My efforts are aimed to create great perfumes with an affordable price. This is not possible simply following the traditional marketing processes, so I tried to change the rules with Peety and Eva Kant. Both Peety and Eva Kant are principally purchasable via our odriu.com store; there are also some perfumeries in Europe where is possible to test them, but the perfumes will arrive at our customers home as a mail order.
I’d like to have a production plant in USA also, so to cut production and export costs, but it will be possible only finding a partner… hopefully in this life!
As an artist, I have the particular need to create a new communication pathway in perfumery. From this point of view, Peety has been simply a phenomenon, due to its advertising and its related new visual concept. We are also in the creative process for the next step in Peety communication: a viral video which we want to issue on line… we expect it will be explosive!

TO BE CONTINUED TOMORROW WITH A GIVEAWAY!!

Peety is available from the O’Driu site €150/49ml

Surrender To Chance starts at $6/.5ml

Sydney_Bridge_Happy_New_Year WikipediaPhoto Stolen Wikipedia

 

14 comments on “Angelo Orazio Pregon Interview: Peety by O’Driu 2013

  1. cookie queen says:

    Love this Azar. It still brings a “hmmmmm” out of me though!!
    Happy New Year!! Fun being on a team with you. Bussis. CQ xxxxx

  2. Lauren says:

    Hi Mom – I find it interesting that he says his perfumes come to life in his mind and he doesn’t need to smell anything. Isaac does something similar with cooking, he doesn’t usually taste what he makes until he sits down to eat. (Regardless of whether or not it’s something he has made before.) He says he doesn’t need to taste while he’s cooking because he “envisions the flavors”. Sometimes I’m skeptical but it’s always delicious! I look forward to the next part of the interview! -Lauren

    • Azar says:

      Hi Lauren,
      I think Angelo Orazio Peroni is a genius perfumer with a great memory for scents and how they work in combination. Much like the perfumer, Isaac has a genius for flavors and a fantastic memory for combinations. You are lucky to be married to such a fabulous cook! Happy New Year to you both!
      Love,
      Mommy Azar xxx and x

  3. australianperfumejunkies says:

    Azar,
    You have blown me away with this interview. I know how hard you worked on your questions and with what reverence you approached the idea of interviewing Angelo Orazio Pregon, who is both artist and nose. The outcome is outstanding and you should be VERY proud. So many questions I wanted answers to and many I’d never thought of.
    I love the fact that this seminal interview has featured on the last day of 2013 and the first of 2014 with a terrific giveaway our very first event. AWESOME!
    Thanks for being part of our family here at APJ.
    Portia xx

    • Azar says:

      Thank you, Portia!

      I enjoyed this whole process. BTW, I applied virgin Peety today and have had a number of compliments and people asking me what scent I was wearing.

      Did you party hearty on New Years Eve? Here it is still 2013 and we are about to settle into a new K drama to celebrate the New Year.

      Best Wishes for a wonderful 2014.

      Azar xx

      • australianperfumejunkies says:

        I have only heard good things about Peety in the before stage and only a few comments about the after. Michael who writes for us was part of the group that this was trialed with on BaseNotes and he liked it weed in.
        We partied till around 2pm. I was working and we had a small but significant crew with us. Jin even came for dinner and a couple of drinks though he worked the Eve and had to go to work today at 6am. My BFF Kath was the Karaoke mistress with me singing BADLY a couple of songs.
        A good time had by all.
        Portia xx

  4. FeralJasmine says:

    It’s early New Years Eve here, and I am drooling over your description and remembering that I won a 1ml sample of Peety in a draw and-horrors- I misplaced it before I got a chance to try it. It sounds right up my alley, and I love Druids and shamans and such, so tomorrow morning I will go into my “most recent” box and resurrect it.

    • Azar says:

      Hi FeralJasmine,
      I love this Peety (the virgin version). Stay tuned for the give-away tomorrow. It’s a big one! In the meantime I hope you find your little vial of Peety. Happy New Year and Best Wishes for a Fantastic 2014!
      Azar xx

  5. Laurels says:

    Very interesting interview. Between the raves here and at the Perfume Posse, Peety sounds great. I’ll be a little afraid to see the video, though.

    Happy New Year to everyone!

    • Azar says:

      Hi Laurels,
      Thank you. I really enjoyed doing this interview. Make sure to check out the great draw! Have a wonderful 2014!
      Azar xx

  6. […] reading: Azar hosts a wonderful interview with Peety Perfumer Angelo Orazio Pregon O’Driu has €150/50ml and samples Surrender to Chance has samples starting at […]

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