Post by Ainslie Walker
Hello my favourite fragrant folk!
Earlier this year I developed a fragrance to accompany the scenic launch of Australian fashion designer, Alexi Freeman’s latest collection. The scent was released ambiently during the catwalk showing of White Noise trans-seasonal 2016 on the clifftops at MONA Museum, Hobart – possibly the most southern and most scenic catwalk in fashion history!
“As daylight shifts to the still of night, silhouettes move upon a cliff face. Ultra violet light reflects from pale, voluminous and translucent threads. Nearby vineyard fruits sweeten the air. Vapor escapes from shimmering bitumen. White leather treads, pulsing the earths surface. Light amber woods waft upwards carrying the salted air if the river towards us. Soon darkness reigns, broken only by the glimmer of the star filled sky”
MONA is one of the worlds most iconic Art Museums. I am honored to have been the first ‘fragrance artist’ to scent the iconic outdoor space. Here’s hoping there will be more scent events at MONA in the future! Over a few glasses of the local Pinot Noir I talked to owner, art collector David Walsh, discussing ‘scent as art.’ David finds wearing perfume “misleading.” He likes to smell the “natural scent of a person,” deeming it sexy, rather than “a false mask that wears off and is no longer there in the morning.” We discussed basic instincts and attraction in humans and the potential to find a lover attractive due to their natural odor and how wearing fragrance can potentially mess with proceedings and attract the wrong person! (The concept of odiferous ‘beer goggles?!’)
The event was curated by Brian Ritchie, ex-bassist for The Violent Femmes. Each day as he passed by me he opened his collar for a few squirts of Nocturne and a giggle. He loved it and even read it’s description out for the whole crowd!! (My teenage-90s-grunge inner child SQUEALED all the while, believe me!)
Morag from Aussie Fragrance Network Facebook Group came along to the show with her daughter and here she describes the evening:
“We walked uphill from the bitumen car park past lawns and sculptures. Looking out over the river we watched the mix of fashionistas and conventionally styled audience members drift in. We took our seats on heated benches beneath the ** installation, to wait for the fashion show to begin.
We basked in the change from daylight to night, watching the silhouette of gum trees against a darkening sky. The sculpture’s coloured lights shifted through the rainbow, whilst seamlessly melding with the sky.
All the while, the air was filled with colour, Ainslie Walker’s Nocturne. Rich, luscious fruits and florals – deeply velvet. Byron Meyer produced accompanying soundscapes which in turn carried ethereal gowns, white on white, floating and gliding past us: Alexi Freeman’s White Noise collection. Shorts and tank tops, beautiful gauzy dresses over bodysuits threaded with silver and textural contrasts of leather and perspex glowed under UV, surrounded by the darkness of night.
A feast for all the senses. A subtle fusing and truly experiential. A sensory experience full of provocation.
Wearing Ainslie’s Nocturne, I am transported to that evening and beyond. Because what I smelt that night was just the beginning. On the skin, the scent is much much more. After the voluptuous ripeness dissipates, there is a calm quiet center of gentle leather and musk. The easing into the night after a spectacular sunset.”
Nocturne. Ainslie Walker for Alexi Freeman
APJ READERS OFFER: contact Ainslie Walker to order sampler in card, including postage for $20
Nocturne limited edition candle from Ainslie Walker or Alexi Freeman’s Studio in Fitzroy, Melbourne.
Limited edition Nocturne parfum via emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
PS big thanks to Morag for her support and story xx
Please tell me about a scent installation you’ve attended?
All Photos donated by Ainslie Walker