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The shapes of scent: fragrance in commercial spaces and as a means of artistic expression

In this project, I study fragrance and architecture from an experiential perspective, looking especially at the role of commercial space. I analyse the experience of being in a shop, but from the perspective of communication rather than of sales. More specifically, I want to explore how the spatial environment of a shop can serve to heighten the experience and understanding of fragrance. I adopt a broadened approach, one that emphasizes sensory experience above and beyond the purely visual. I examine how architecture and spatial design can enhance non-visual aspects of experience, with a focus on scent. By analysing niche perfume boutiques – shops selling perfume without the support of visual marketing materials and advertisements – I aim to examine how spatiality and fragrance combine to amplify the sensory experience in a retail environment. In the world of art, architecture and museums, methods exist to grasp important values that are difficult to measure, such as aesthetic experience, emotional impressions and bodily reactions. Through a comparative study where I chart strategies for conveying scents and their meanings in boutique and museum environments, I can broaden the understanding of fragrance and arrive at new perspectives on how it can be presented and made comprehensible. An artistic perspective on fragrance enables the analysis and understanding of boutique experience in new ways.

Project leader: Viveka Kjellmer
Project duration: 2015–2019
Funding: The Faculty of Arts and Wilhelm & Martina Lundgren’s Science Fund

Contact Information

Viveka Kjellmer

PO Box 200, 405 30 Gothenburg, Sweden

Visiting Address:
Vera Sandbergs Allé 8, room 2248

+46-(0)31-786 1975

Page Manager: Felicia Bigot Klinteberg|Last update: 1/17/2018

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