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Doftande museum vidgar intrycken

Magazine article
Authors Viveka Kjellmer
Published in Alba. Om kultur, vetenskap och samhälle.
Volume 2015
Issue 150902
ISSN 1403-5448
Publication year 2015
Published at Department of Cultural Sciences
Language sv
Keywords scent, museum, perfume, multisensory experience, haptic visuality
Subject categories Art History


Scent triggers other experiences and memories than visual stimuli. Invisible and elusive, it still affects us very strongly, and the sense of smell can evoke both emotional and physical responses. How can scent be understood as a bearer of meaning? In this article scent in the museum is discussed – as art and artefact, and as a medium to convey the mood of a time and an understanding of spatiality. One way to invite scent into the museum is to present fragrance as art. L’Osmothèque outside Paris is an olfactory archive for lost and forgotten fragrances. The museum supports the art of perfumery by collecting and preserving important works from perfume history. Visitors can smell the perfumes from bygone eras and experience the scent of history. Perfume creation is presented as a form of artistic expression. A similar approach was used at the exhibition Art of Scent 1889-2012 at the Museum of Art and Design (New York 2013). Perfume was exhibited as artwork, and the scents themselves played the leading role, without bottles or marketing, in an exhibition where visitors smelled the perfumes through specially designed scent dispensers. Scent as a bearer of meaning in the museum is still relatively unexplored. It is fundamentally about communicating through multiple senses – and creating more diverse exhibitions – but it is also about conveying new aspects of culture.

Page Manager: Webmaster|Last update: 9/11/2012

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