Rose garden ✿ Follow your nose

Garden of Stories

A devotee stoops over a copper cauldron to bathe in the aroma of incense.

Take the time to reflect on the beauty of our olfactory sense, as crafted in many cultures of the wider world.

Smells detonate softly in our memory like poignant land mines, hidden under the weedy mass of many years and experiences.

Diane Ackerman, A Natural History of the Senses

Otobong Nkanga ✿ Soap stacks of the wider world - Jessica Hemmings reviews Otobongo Nkanga's exhibition of soap with the help of a novel by Teju Cole.
Marta Figueiredo ✿ Elementary Abacus - Marta Figueiredo tells us about one of her remarkable multi-sensory works that brings together all five senses in an experiential feast.
Monkō (聞香): The Japanese way of listening to incense - Sachiko Tamashige offers a brief history of incense culture in Japan and the experience of visiting Kunjyukan in Kyoto.
What could happen if we could smell the past?: Olfactory archeology in Pompei - Sissel Tolaas has developed archeological tools for discovering the smells of Pompei, which promises to connect us emotionally to the ancient past.
Lotus blooms and divine blessings: A spiritual journey through fragrance and festivity - Japneet Keith recounts the floral scents associated with the deities invoked in Durga Puja.
In Libro de Tenebris - In presenting an exhibition of photographs, Paul Schütze decided to add an olfactory dimension, which opened doors into another time.
The Song of the actinomycetes - Priyanka Jain sings about microbes in medieval Indian miniature paintings of a love that is triggered by the smell of rain.
Secret(ion)s from an occasionally scented jewellery practice - Melinda Young shares her quest to transform scent into personal adornment
Through the garden gate: Litrahb Perfumery and the world of synaesthesia  - Chloé Wolifson learns about the olfactory curating of Bharti Lalwani, which resulted in a scent canopy for an exhibition of Indian miniatures.
Surrounded by scent: Perfumery in the courtly cultures of early-modern South Asia - Simran Agarwal finds an extraordinarily elaborate culture of fragrance in India's Persianate world.
The life of a rosemary distiller - For Bridget Nicholson, rosemary distillation is a fragrant craft that grounds the senses.
A bush alembic: To distil the scent of the land - Forest Keegel distils plant hydrosols as a way of being on Country.
Cardamom is forever: Jewellery for the Sri Lankan diaspora - Through the process of electroforming, Inoka Samarasekara has been able to embody the smell of Sri Lanka into her jewellery.
A fragrant pilgrimage to the Norbulingka Institute - Japneeth Keith ventures to little Lhasa, the source of Tibetan incense craft. 
Scented adornment in North Africa and Southwest Asia - Sigrid van Roode discovers redolent objects of wearable fragrance in the cultures of the Middle East.
The scent of Korean contemporary craft - Hyeyoung CHO identifies the distinct aroma of Korean culture that imbues its authentic craft.
Dhoop-batti: The fragrance rises from the roots - LOkesh Ghai discovers the authentic incense of the Gaddi nomadic community, redolent of the land they traverse.
Nanamu as Tongan sense of smelling: A tāvāist philosophical critique - Hūfanga-He-Ako-Moe-Lotu, ‘Ōkusitino Māhina, Kolokesa Uafā Māhina-Tuai and Tavakefai‘ana, Sēmisi Fetokai Kulīha‘apai Moahehengiovava‘ulahi Potauaine share the profound meaning of smell in Tongan culture. 
Fragrant memories from Minas Gerais - Lena Emediato designs candles that use smell, touch and sight to tap into the emotions.
The scented city: Incense making in Kathmandu - Gary Wornell travels to the source of the pungent smells that orchestrate his daily life in Nepal.
Design for the nose: A brief history of olfactory objects - Clara Muller outlines the history of "olfactory design" and her interest in realising past dreams of a new art form.
Smelling is believing - In a post-COVID moment, the powerful aroma of the exhibition Biomater prompts Liliana Ojeda to remember the importance of being there.
Ross Gibson ✿ Listening to Incense - Kathryn Bird describes the incense ritual that provides a shared emotional thread through the process of mourning her husband.
Jewellery to cast away the evil of the world - In a Tehran cafe, friends gather to imbibe Sepideh Ghasemi's redolent jewellery.
Scent in 2023 Cheongju Craft Biennale - Artistic Director, KANG Jaeyoung, explicates the concept of "objet" that frames the extraordinary works of the Cheongju Craft Biennale.
The rose perfumers of Kannauj - Dwan Kaoukji tracks the production of the most exquisite floral scent from the perfumeries of Kuwait to the traditional distillers of Uttar Pradesh
The fragrant power of Dutjahn - Angie Faye Martin finds a part Aboriginal-owned company that continues the ancient harvesting of sandalwood to produce much-coveted scented oils.
Monumentalizing rituals of the Palestinian diaspora - Reema Abu Hassan has designed receptacles for the olfactory memories that are so precious to the Palestinians dispersed across the world.
The culture we breathe - Laila Al-Hamad finds in the tight-knit communities of the Gulf a social context for the appreciation of fragrance as a medium of shared experience.
Laila Al Hamad ✿ The craft of smell - Kuwaiti designer Laila Al Hamad speaks about the meaning of smell in Arab cultures and how it connects people together.
The Mongolian snuff bottle pouch: Embracing aromatic culture - The snuff bottle pouch adorns a key ritual that binds Mongolians together: the exchange of smells.

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