OLFACTORY LABYRINTH VER. 4
- Find the Spot for Ohanami -
[Place] Japan House Sao Paulo (premier)
[Dates] June 4 to Oct 21, 2018
[Artist] Maki UEDA (solo exhibition)
[Curator] Felipe RIEBENBOOM
[Total visitors] 307,439
[Total media reports] 114
This is the 4th version of my Olfactory Labyrinth Series, exploring space, movement and olfaction started in 2013. It is a maze with a metaphor of ohanami.
Ohanami is the Japanese traditional custom of picnic party for enjoying cherry blossoms in early spring. “Find the best spot for ohanami, with the sense of smell”, is the assignment to the audience. As you get closer to the invisible sakura (cherry blossoms) trees, it smells stronger.
There are 81 bottles hanging from the ceiling in the grid of 9x9. Each bottle contains fragrant oil. The candle rope by which it hangs from the ceiling gradually absorbs the oil and spreads the scent around the space. The oil is just strong enough to be smelled from 35 cm distance. Each grid is thus 70 cm, just wide enough for a person to walk through while smelling. In order to make it possible, the solvent is carefully calibrated as follows: ethanol 80% (emitting property) / propylene glycol 20% (fixative property) .
This version is inspired by The Weber-Fechner Law on psychophysics: the logarithmic relation between the actual change in a physical stimulus and the perceived change. The concentration increases in 3 steps in multiple of 33, as a result of many experimentations: (1) 10.00% (2) 0.33% (3) 0.01% (4) 0.00%
The fragrance sakura is composed by myself as well. I tried to resemble it to the blossoms in the night, which emits very soft and powdery scent in silence.
The last step of the development is composition of colors. The higher concentration has darker color, so there needs color adjustment by each concentration, in order to mask the concentration visually.