Ol­fac­tory ob­ses­sions

Neue Luxury - - Front Page - Eau

When it comes to the world of niche and ar­ti­sanal per­fumery, it’s easy to ob­sess. As per­haps one of the most el­e­gant and eso­teric nomen­cla­tures of art and science, haute per­fumery has the abil­ity to bot­tle the very best of artis­tic hu­man en­deav­our. And while we know that scent stim­u­lates the re­gion of the brain re­spon­si­ble for au­then­tic emo­tional en­gage­ment—its ef­fect on our psy­che stronger than sight, hear­ing, touch and taste com­bined —what of the sen­sory agents who en­gi­neer these trig­gers? Those who se­duce, in­trigue and move us to think and act. Neue Lux­ury peeled back the la­bel to re­veal seven of the bright­est and most tal­ented noses alive.


Jean Jac­ques be­gan his ca­reer as an ac­com­plished jazz mu­si­cian, work­ing with notes and tones of an en­tirely dif­fer­ent na­ture. Af­ter se­cur­ing his de­gree in bio­chem­istry in 1993, he en­tered ISIPCA in France and be­gan prac­tic­ing at Quest In­ter­na­tional, work­ing along­side Pierre Bour­don then Mau­rice Rou­cel. In 1994 he was re­cruited by Kao Cor­po­ra­tion and in 1997 moved to Takasago. With Sergei Rach­mani­noff noted as one of his great idols, it is no sur­prise that Jean Jac­ques has cre­ated a spec­trum of in­trigu­ing and com­plex cre­ations such as Balmya for Bal­main, Ab­so­lutely for Givenchy, Pour Homme for Ted Lapidus, Tous Les Par­fums for Masaki Paris, Sun Rise Women for Jil San­der and C’est La Fête for Chris­tian Lacroix (co-cre­ated with Fran­cis Kurkd­jian).


Jean-claude Ellena is un­doubt­edly one of the worlds most cel­e­brated per­fumers. Born in Grasse, on the French Riviera, as the son of a per­fumer, Ellena be­came the first stu­dent of the Gi­vau­dan per­fumery school in 1968. In 1983 he joined Gi­vau­dan Paris as chief per­fumer and in 1990 be­came one of the founding mem­bers of the Os­moth­èque, an in­ter­na­tional scent ar­chive based in Ver­sailles. Since 2004, Ellena has been the ex­clu­sive in-house per­fumer for Hermès, as well as cre­at­ing an in­cred­i­ble body of work for Amouage, Ba­len­ci­aga, Bul­gari, Cartier, Chris­tian Lacroix, Frédéric Malle, Lalique and Yves Saint Lau­rent through­out his ca­reer. Ellena is in­spired by daily life and of­ten re­marks “per­fume is a po­etry of sou­venirs, and mainly the cre­ation of the spirit”.


Born in Eng­land and raised out­side of Ham­burg, Ger­many, Mark Bux­ton is above all a he­donist, wine con­nois­seur and tal­ented cook with a pas­sion for an­tiques. With over 25 years of ex­pe­ri­ence in fine fra­grance cre­ation, Bux­ton has col­lab­o­rated with lead­ing in­ter­na­tional fra­grance houses and lux­ury brands as di­verse as Givenchy, Ver­sace, Van Cleef & Ar­pels, Paco Rabanne, Lager­feld, Burberry, Cartier, Chopard and Ferré. His unique sen­sory hand­writ­ing was dis­cov­ered when he cre­ated the first fra­grances for Comme des Garçons Par­fums and which in turn quickly po­si­tioned him as a vi­sion­ary in haute per­fumery.


Born in Stras­bourg, France, An­toine Lie has al­ways ob­sessed about the smell of things. Bal­anc­ing the de­mands of an in­sa­tiable per­fume in­dus­try with the ar­ti­sanal sen­si­bil­i­ties re­quired to cre­ate last­ing and mem­o­rable works, Lie has of­ten been de­scribed as both sub­ver­sive and com­mer­cial in the same sen­tence. Sup­port­ing this claim is the di­chotomy and depth of his work on a broad spec­trum of unique scents in­clud­ing Won­der­wood (Comme des Garçons), de Pro­tec­tion (Etat Libre d’or­ange) and RED +MA (Blood Con­cept). Af­ter work­ing with the ma­jor per­fume houses and lux­ury brands such as Ermenegildo Zegna, Givenchy, Kenzo, Tom of Fin­land, Valentino and Ver­sace, Lie joined the Paris per­fumery team of Takasago in 2011.


Ber­trand Duchaufour com­menced his ca­reer in 1985, work­ing as a per­fumer with the Flo­rasynth Group in Grasse, France. Since 2008, Duchaufour has been a ‘per­fumer in res­i­dence’ with L’ar­ti­san Par­fumeur, one of the worlds most unique and avant-garde fra­grance houses. Fol­low­ing two fun­da­men­tal prin­ci­pals, Ber­trand be­lieves that bal­ance is achieved when op­po­sites at­tract and that noth­ing is lost or cre­ated, only trans­formed. Dis­tort­ing and de­con­struct­ing el­e­ments of na­ture, this ol­fac­tory ar­ti­san has cre­ated fra­grances for many of the world’s best houses in­clud­ing Pen­haligon’s, Amouage, Comme des Gar­cons, Givenchy and Chris­tian Dior.


Sylvie Fis­cher is some­what of a rare in­gre­di­ent in the ol­fac­tory world, as the daugh­ter of a per­fumer; she was raised in the world of fra­grance. Driven by a deep love of art, Fis­cher com­menced her ap­pren­tice­ship at the age of twenty fol­lowed by an in­tern­ship at French fra­grance house Robertet. Hav­ing re­fined her skills un­der the watch­ful eye of Pierre Bour­don and Michel Al­mairac, Fis­cher then took up her cur­rent po­si­tion at Takasago. Hav­ing been ‘the nose’ be­hind an in­cred­i­ble breath and depth of both com­mer­cial and haute fra­grances, Fis­cher’s col­lab­o­ra­tion with mas­ter per­fumers Fran­coise Caron, An­toine Lie and Ni­co­las Bon­neville for fra­grance house Nu_be, is no­table for its ex­plo­ration of el­e­ments in­spired by the ori­gin of the cos­mos.


Hav­ing lived more than 10 years in Nice, a cra­dle in the per­fume world, it was a nat­u­ral evo­lu­tion for Jerome di Marino to be­come a per­fumer. In 2008, Marino joined Gi­vau­dan as a trainee along­side Nathalie Cetto and in 2011 joined Givenchy’s ol­fac­tive cell with Françoise Donche. Join­ing Takasago in 2012, Jerome started train­ing un­der the guid­ance of Fran­cis Kurkd­jian. Af­ter fol­low­ing the mantra: ‘every­thing comes to those who wait’, we strongly be­lieve that Marino’s time is now.

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