Twinkle, twinkle… Gorilla Perfumes scent star-sniffing ICA exhibition

Well known for their love of linking art and perfumery, Gorilla Perfumes – the dedicated fragrance offshoot of Lush – never shy away from pushing the boundaries of how we experience scent and the ways it can change our perception of the world around us (or, indeed, the very names of the perfumes themselves – their latest collection was entitled Death, Decay and Renewal). Often linking deeply personal or emotional stories to their fragrance collections, Gorilla Perfumes are now working in partnership with the ICA – the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London – to scent a public exhibition entitled Rot of the Stars. But don’t worry, it’s not about the smell of festering celebrities, but rather stars of the celestial kind… Gorilla Perfumes say: ‘It’s a project started by Mark Pilkington – who made the film Mirage Men, and who also worked with us on our Volume 2 collection, Set in Stone. He’s working with Jo Fisher who is a performance artist.

 Fig-2 at ICA is running 50 projects over 50 weeks and this is the 21st one. The aim is to open up the channels between our world and the ‘platisphere’, an ecosystem inhabited by more than 1000 microbes. It’s going to be a sensory experience involving light, sound, visuals and smell, and our Mycelium perfume – which you may remember if you visited the Volume 3 exhibition of fragrances, and which was for the show only so didn’t go on sale – will be scenting it…’

Lush describe Mycelium: ‘An undeniably mushroomy fragrance. It captures an early morning walk through the forest gathering mushrooms, treading over moss and wet undergrowth – the air filled with the scent of a new dawn. Mycelium is named after the organic web of fibrous tissue from which mushrooms and fungi spring. After learning about Mycelium through the work of Paul Stamets – a famous fungi guru, Simon became fascinated. The fragrance represents the ever-churning earth – the preparation of fallow ground for further growth and the billion twinkling points of life that spring up in wake of death and decay.’
Rot of the Stars – the exhibition runs until Sunday 31st, but performances are Mon, Tues, Weds, Fri and Sat 1-1.20pm, and Thurs 7-7.20pm

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