Fragrance Reviewed by Luca Turin

I’m honored to have had my fragrance project, “On Forgetting” reviewed by Luca Turin. Luca Turin is the author of several books on perfume, is a scientist and major personality in the world of fragrance. I tried to explain to a colleague that to have a review from him was akin to Robert Parker enjoying your wine, or Beyonce publicly liking your new tune. I’m honored, and feeling proud that yes all the efforts are sometimes worth it:)

You may read it on his site, or below. Thanks for reading, smelling and being curious!, Fragrance Review by By Luca Turin, June 26, 2016

I am always wary of programme art: Aaron Copland’s Appalachian Spring was composed in complete ignorance of its title, with Martha Graham merely asking for a piece “on an American theme”. Yet Copland got a lot of mail afterwards telling him how the piece nailed spring in the Appalachians. One thing is to give a piece or a perfume a brilliantly apt name after it is done, as in Lento or Angel, quite another is to produce one or more fragrances hanging on a concept. On this I am entirely with Stravinsky who said “music is, by its very nature, essentially powerless to express anything at all, whether a feeling, an attitude of mind, a psychological mood, a phenomenon of nature, etc.” Even truer for perfume, in my opinion.

This preamble is meant as a sort of apology for nearly overlooking four perfume samples from essayist and perfumer Catherine Haley Epstein that come from an installation at the Hammer Museum. They are titled Forget Last Night, Forget 5, 10 and 20 years ago. They came in the most awkward of all sample formats, small glass vials with a little plastic cork and no dipper. It is almost impossible to get the stuff out of the vials without getting it all over your hands. [Everybody please send sprays or, in the case of attars, those little roll-on bottles like a giant ballpoint pen]. In a nutshell, I was irritated by the fiddly samples, could not understand why the stuff represented forgetting things at different times, looked on the website and found no info, and I tossed the whole thing on the pile of samples I’d rather not talk about.

Then I walked around the house and smelled my hand. Damn, thought I, this smells good. Back to the samples, this time forgetting the Forgetting. These are all really nice fragrances, but the one that brought me back turned out to be Forget 5 Years Ago. I have no idea what happened five years ago in CHE’s life, and as I said above I doubt it had anything to do with the fragrance, but this thing smells really good, a rich, melancholy, powdery floral hovering between gardenia and tobacco. Definitely worth remembering.


On Forgetting Project to Travel to LA

Screen Shot 2016-04-22 at 10.56.38 AM

I’m honored to be participating in the inaugural AIX Artisan Independent Experimental Scent Fair at the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles! I will be presenting my fragrance for the project “On Forgetting | Filing the Flask”. I am among some incredibly talented perfumers doing some terrific, innovative work in the field of niche perfume. Please join me! Many, many thanks to the good people at The Institute for Art & Olfaction for their support of my work, and the curators at the Hammer Museum with a brilliant vision to see fragrance as a compelling medium for art.

May 6–8, 2016

Co-presented by The Institute for Art and Olfaction and Luckyscent/Scent Bar

An international selection of fragrance makers will upend your preconceptions of perfume at this three-day artisan, independent, experimental scent fair. Browse highly conceptual—even unexpected—scents; participate in workshops or a panel; and attend the fragrance fête of the season, The Institute for Art and Olfaction’s Third Annual Art and Olfaction Awards with emcee Zackary Drucker. Perhaps you’ll even find your new signature scent.


AIX Scent Fair Kickoff Keynote & Panel
Friday, May 6, 7:30 p.m.
Keynote Speaker: Lizzie Ostrom, AKA Odette Toilette, author and scented event organizer. Panelists: Chandler Burr, journalist, author and curator of olfactory art; Dr. Avery Gilbert, psychologist and self-described smell scientist, entrepreneur, and author; and Jacquelyn Ford Morie, scientist and virtual reality innovator. Panel moderated by Saskia Wilson-Brown, founder and director, The Institute for Art and Olfaction.

AIX Scent Fair Hours
Saturday, May 7, 11 a.m.–5 p.m. and Sunday, May 8, 11 a.m.–5 p.m.
An international selection of fragrance makers showcase and sell their works.

Third Annual Art and Olfaction Awards with Emcee Zackary Drucker
Saturday, May 7, 6:30 p.m. cocktail hour, 7:30 p.m. ceremony*
Prestigious Golden Pear awards announced. Special guest emcee Zackary Drucker (Whitney Biennial 2014; Co-Producer, Golden Globe and Emmy award-winningTransparent). – See more at:


Aether Arts Perfume, Boulder, US
Atelier de Geste, New York, US
Auphorie, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Bogue Profumo, Brescia, Italy
Brooklyn Perfume Company, New York, US
Bruno Fazzolari, San Francisco, US
Century’s Breath (Cat Jones), Sydney, Australia
Charenton Macerations, New York, US
COGNOSCENTI, San Francisco, US
Dasein, Los Angeles, US
Dead Writers Perfume by Sweet Tea Apothecary, Seattle, US
DSH Perfumes, Boulder, US
El Jardí Secret, Barcelona, Spain
Goest Perfumes, Los Angeles, US
Ideasthesia by MIKMOI, San Francisco, US
Imaginary Authors, Portland, US
J.Hannah Co, San Francisco, US
Jazmin Saraï, Montréal, Canada
Jolie Laide Perfume, San Francisco, US
L’Oeil du Vert, Los Angeles, US
Luckyscent / Scent Bar, Los Angeles, US
Parfums Lalun, Los Angeles, US
Maison Anonyme, Los Angeles, US
Manifest Destiny, Los Angeles, US
Maria Candida Gentile Maitre Parfumeur, Sarzana, Italy
Mendittorosa Odori d’Anima, Rome, Italy
Menyan Projects, Bali, Indonesia
Monsillage, Montréal, Canada
Neandertal, London, UK
NOBILE 1942, Genoa, Italy
Olympic Orchids Perfumes, Seattle, US
On Forgetting | Filling the Flask, Camas, US
Phoenix Botanicals, New York, US
PK Perfumes, Menifee, US
Portland Apothecary, Portland, US
Sarah Baker, London, UK
Scents of the Apocalypse, San Francisco, US
Sonoma Scent Studio, Sonoma, US
The Institute for Art and Olfaction; The Art and Olfaction Awards, Los Angeles, US
The Smelly Vials Perfume Club, Los Angeles, US
Tigerlily Perfumery, San Francisco, US
Xyrena, Los Angeles, US

Art For Everyone | Publishing Project


I’m honored to be included in the text book created by Chemeketa College titled, “Art For Everyone”. The book will debut next Fall, and there will be subsequent exhibits to celebrate the launch. The book was created in order to provide an affordable text book to students, as generally the cost of art books are exorbitant. The creative and resourceful team at the school has developed this text and will make it available for free online and for a small fee in print. Stay tuned for more details!


The work being described is a piece that was included in my Sorting the Seeds exhibit, pictured below. Some background on the work itself:

“My Pharmacy | Homage to Kazimir Malevich”

Medium: 3 acrylic shelves, glass bottles with pigment

Size: 24 x 48 x 8.5  inches


Kazimir Malevich was a Russian painter in the early 20th century, famous for black and white square paintings. I recently read one of his short essays, “On the Museum”, from 1919. In the essay he proposes that museums be burned and ashes organized like a chemist shelf in order to make room for new art. What he meant:


“The aim (of this pharmacy) will be the same, even if people will examine the powder from Rubens and all his art – a mass of ideas will arise in people, and will be often more alive than actual representation (and take-up less room).”


While I am not an advocate for burning art objects or museums, the notion of making way for the new is very exciting. As artists we stand on the shoulders of giants, and often times can be overwhelmed with the industrial focus on certain artists. I constantly look for inspiration from life and artists, so I made my little pharmacy, knowing that the gold dust of Artemesia for example will suffice in reminding me of the strength and beauty of her work. And I hope that one day I can actually mix everything right, like a good chemist, to create something truly new.

"My Pharmacy | Homage to Kazimir Malevich", Catherine Haley Epstein
“My Pharmacy | Homage to Kazimir Malevich”, Catherine Haley Epstein
Detail of "My Pharmacy | Homage to Kazimir Malevich", Catherine Haley Epstein
Detail of “My Pharmacy | Homage to Kazimir Malevich”, Catherine Haley Epstein



On Coloring | An Exhibition on Contemporary Art History and Coloring (2)

This April I’ve arranged a colorful exhibition of works by over 25 local and international artists* who pay homage to contemporary artists and thinkers from the likes of Diane Arbus, Donald Judd, Eva Hesse and Joseph Cornell. Artists have contributed from throughout the US, to Japan and London. This is the second installation of the Coloring Project I have been working on since 2007.

Pushdot Studio will display the exhibition of beautifully colored posters from tracings found in my coloring book In a True Democracy the Many are Obligated to the Few. The exercise in coloring is a gesture to distill art and art history, to dialog about lineage, and to play with the seriousness that is “Art”.

Proceeds from the sale of the works and coloring books will go to da Vinci Arts Middle School arts programming.

OPEN/CLOSE: Friday April 1st – May 27th, 2016

ARTIST RECEPTION: Friday April 1st, 6-8pm 

PUSHDOT STUDIO – 2505 SE 11th Avenue, Suite 104 – in the Ford Building, enter on Division Street – Portland, OR 97202, 503.224.5925

Gallery Hours: Mon-Fri. 8:30am to 5:00pm, free admission

Installation in progress, detail at Pushdot Studios, Portland, OR

*Participating Artists
Ann Ploeger | Portland, OR
Anne Greenwood | Portland, OR
Art Huang | Tokyo, Japan
Carla Repice | Brooklyn, NY
Chris Bennett | Portland, OR
Chris Leib | Brooklyn, NY
Diane Jacobs |Portland, OR
Gabriel Liston |Portland, OR
Gigi Conot | Portland, OR
Jennifer Esperanza | Santa Fe, NM
Jamie Emerick | San Francisco, CA
Julio Cantu | Portland, OR
Laura Mack | Salem, OR
Lincoln Miller & Dardinelle Troen | Portland, OR
Lisa Golightly | Portland, OR
Luke Doklas | Portland, OR
Marcia Teusink | London, UK
MJ Dowling | Denver, CO
Paolo Salvagione | Saulsalito, CA
Patrick Hinds | Portland, OR
Rachel Siegel | Portland, OR
Rebecca Szeto | San Francisco, CA
Richard Kurtz | Santa Fe, NM
Robert Tomlinson | Independence, OR
Rory Sparks | Portland, OR
Sam Tudyk | Marblehead, MA
Stepanka Peterka | Portland, OR
Thérèse Murdza | Portland, OR


Article on the Coloring Project by me, featured in the Spring edition of “Picture Sentence”.