One way to convey the idea that fragrance is not just an assemblage of odoriferous molecules but a work of art created by people with imagination and vision is to accompany the perfume with a body of visual works. Since most people are more attuned to visual cues than to olfactory ones, it all makes things much clearer.
This is exactly what Penhaligon's have done for their latest fragrance, Sartorial, which is inspired by the smells of the workrooms of Norton and Sons on Savile Row. You thought Savile Row equals tradition? You thought Charming and old-fashioned? Wait until you see the short stop-motion film directed by Quentin Jones and featuring perfumer Bertrand Duchaufour, the author of the scent, as well as a few other compradores: it is very arty. It puts some distance with the idea that Norton and Sons is primarily steeped in 19th century history. According to the press release,
"Filmed at the Norton & Sons shop on Savile Row, The Tailors and the Nose features the fragrance's creator Bertrand Duchaufour and Norton & Sons director Patrick Grant. Quentin Jones is an illustrator, animator and Central St. Martins MA graduate. Her clients include E. Tautz, AnOther Magazine and Aubin & Wills."....
The Tailors and the Nose is another tribute to perfumery via a creative stop-motion film. Wonderwood by Comme des Garçons earlier this year also launched with an enigmatic film by the Brothers Quay.
Watch the eccentric mayhem unfold at Norton and Sons; the fragrance will be available from October 11, 2010 in Penhaligon's boutiques, concessions and online at Penhaligon's.
There also upcoming meetups in NYC with perfumer Duchaufour.