Last weekend I was part of a group exhibition at the Old Holy Trinity Church, Wentworth called ‘Measure’ – which looks at the human soul. My own offering was a scented narrative that suggests you can weigh your soul against the virtues of your job.
This is the second outing of this particular body of work, with the first being at Sheffield Cathedral last year. I found that the informal yet contemplative space of Old Trinity Church lent itself more to audience engagement. this was evidenced by how many people took the time to look and contemplate what was in front of them. As such, conversations emerged about life, purpose, vocation, perceptions of self, perceptions of each other and indeed mortality.
It wasn’t all about Life’s Big Questions though, as the design and implementation of my work also revealed to an audience the capacity perfumery has for narrative. In this instance, the perfume I have created forms part of an installation that incorporates painting, 3D work and text. This allows my audience to directly comprehend perfumery against other more established art forms. It certainly holds it’s own and enhances the overall experience.
My next stop is Leeds for Horsforth Walk of Art, where I’ll be trialling a new idea based on perfume and emojis. Looking forward to it!
Behold, my first attempt at a scented candle!
Not bad eh?
But why?! I hear you ask. Well, as well as it being a notable use for fragrance oils – which I have in abundance due to my perfumery pursuits – I am seeking to initiate and develop a new strand of work, which will re-purpose church spaces in an attempt to re-align art to religion.
My work tends to offer many layers of engagement whist also seeming relativity subtle- a studio space that isn’t actually a studio space; a perfume shop that isn’t actually a perfume shop; and now a shrine that isn’t actually a shrine. These shrines will speculate upon an existence for artists that draws parallels to a religion. The aim is to explore, speculate and create alternative functions for both creative and religious practice in order to attain a furthered and relevant understanding of them both within the present. Are art galleries the Cathedrals of the present day? Or can the very working of religion inform how art and artists function within society? Or both? Or neither?! And what would all of this look like?!?! Lets find out…