The Art And Olfaction Awards

Guest Post by Jordan River

New Awards for Indie and Artisan Perfumers

The Art and Olfaction Awards
2014 brings us a new award model for independent and artisan perfumers called The Art and Olfaction Awards. These awards have been established to:

celebrate creativity, innovation and excellence in global independent and artisan perfumery.

– The Art and Olfaction Awards

There are only two categories; Indie and Artisan. Perfumers in these categories have until January 24th to submit a sample of their work at a cost of $45 per entry which is limited to two entries of perfumes released in 2013. Submissions are accepted from any country.

The Art and Olfaction Awards are organised by The Insitute of Art and Olfaction in Los Angeles. I spoke with the founder of the institute, Saskia Wilson-Brown about this new development…

The Art and Olfaction Awards are not intended to compete or replace other awards. I come from a film background, and in the film world people submit to many different festivals or awards. We are applying that model to perfumery, so are not trying to be exclusive or competitive with other awards and events. We’re creating a space devoted to independent and artisan perfumers.

Saskia Wilson-Brown
The Institute of Art and Olfaction

Last year there was a lengthy discussion in the comments on Kafkaesque about the FiFi awards. By Jove there were a lot of opinions everywhere about the FiFi award received by By Kilian. There was even a discussion about setting up another series of awards which was cognisant of the differences between niche, indie and artisan categories within the perfume industry. Thankfully this has now happened.

Definitions of Indie and Artisan for the purposes of these awards are here. The awards cleverly transcend any natural vs synthetic categories and gender perceptions of perfume by defining the entrants by business type rather than by type of perfume.

Judges are not allowed to enter their own work and all perfumes will be blindly judged. The judges this time around for The Art and Olfaction Awards are:

Preliminary Judges
Marcos Lutyens – Artist
Brent Leonesio – Perfumer
James McHugh – Historian
Sherri Sebastian – Perfumer
Ashley Eden Kessler – Perfumer
Daniel Krasofski – Natural Perfumer
Hank Jenkins – The Plant Provocateur
Carlos Alvarez – Scent Bar /
Laura Johnson – Scent Bar /
Rachel Sondag – Scent Bar /
Steven Gontarski Scent Bar /
Koan Jeff Baysa – Institute of Art and Olfaction
Yvettra Grantham – Scent Bar /

Final Round Judges
Mandy Aftel – Perfumer
Luca Turin – Perfume Critic
Stefan Sagmeister – Designer
Sarah Horowitz-Thran – Perfumer
Christophe Laudamiel – Perfumer

The judges will be looking for an X factor as well as technical skill, first impressions, dry down performance and the ability of the perfume to be memorable.

The awards ceremony will held be in Los Angeles at The Goethe Institut on April 25, 2014.

Submission – Information
The Art and Olfaction Awards – website

The awards are being produced in partnership and with the support of:
Lucky Scent
Goethe Institut
The Standard Hotel
Beski Projekts
Miniature Perfume Shoppe


What do you think?


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9 Responses to The Art And Olfaction Awards

  1. Tara says:

    Thanks for letting us know about this, Jordan. Sounds like a good move and they seem to have great backing in terms of judges and supporters. I’m sure these new awards will be welcomed by fans and producers of indie and artisan perfumes.

  2. happyface313 says:

    😀 Here I was thinking you put the award together… 🙂
    But I bet you could, with all your knowledge about perfumes 🙂
    Have a very HAPPY weekend! 🙂

  3. Vanessa says:

    This sounds like a great way for small perfume houses to gain recognition, and the judge list is most impressive. The term ‘Art and Olfaction’ inevitably made me think of ‘olfactory art’ and all the recent kerfuffle about whether perfume qualifies to be considered as ‘art’ or not. Then I had a look at the Institute’s website where they mention the ‘olfactive arts’, which sounds more low key somehow – almost like ‘arts and crafts’ when you put it like that. But I am just splitting hairs really – I do think it is a positive move, though I wouldn’t put any perfume, however great, on the same footing as ‘fine art’.

  4. It is great chance for small perfumers to get more recognition and to give them opportunity to show their, I believe many great perfumes. I think many of them deserve that. And I think the jury will have hard work ;-). Wonderful idea!

    • Jordan River says:

      I did not think of that. It will be very hard work indeed albeit with some great scents. Sadly one of my favourites of 2013, Cuir de Gardenia is auto-disqualified as Mandy Aftel is a judge. I have alerted the perfumers I admire of the deadline.

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