The Head of the VOC Visiting a Geisha

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This is a room with the Dutch smells that Maruyama geisha's were smelling in the island Dejima.

Smell 1: coffee

‘The VOC chief factor uses to drink this black drink every morning. It smells slightly burnt to me. He says it's made of beans. I thought it might be similar to Japanese barley tea, so I tasted it. It was terribly bitter, but I managed to swallow it. I have heard that an interpreter had to vomit after he'd drunk it for the first time.’

- Maruyama geisha commenting on the smell of coffee -

 

Smell 2: tobacco

‘For relaxation after eating and intercourse, the VOC chief factor prefers to inhale smoke from a pipe in which some kind of leaves are burned. The smoke fills the whole room. It smells. It smells somewhat sweet, bitter, and rather smoky, as when fallen autumn leaves are being burned.’

- Maruyama geisha commenting on the smell of tobacco -

 

Smell 3: meat

‘On special occasions, this food is often served at dinner. I asked the VOC chief factor where it comes from and he answered, to my surprise, that it comes from the stable at Dejima. He kindly offered me a piece but I could not accept it because I was afraid to receive bad karma by eating it. By the heart of Buddha, we are not allowed to eat four- legged animals.’

- Maruyama geisha commenting on the smell of meat -

- olfactory representation of the city -

workshop & installation (2011)

 

Aromascape of Singapore consists of two parts: a workshop and an exhibition.

In May 2009 and March 2010, Ueda conducted a 3-day workshop for Aromascape of Rotterdam at Willem de Kooning Art Academy, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.  The workshop format will be adopted for the Singapore version of the project.

What do you smell if you walk around the city of Singapore?  Savoury fragrance from food stands and restaurants, green and fresh scent in a market, salty sea bleezes, or stinking garbage?  Singapore has an international reputation to be the clearnest city in the world.  In this project, participants are going to explore Singapore on the level of smell.

What is it that we are smelling, what does it make you imagine, what does it make you feel? This workshop will deal with these questions through a combination of lectures, hands-on workshops with fieldwork.  The result of the workshop will be used for the exhibition.

Some of the smells are extracted and exhibited. Just like a perfume shop, the visitors are free to touch them, open the bottles and smell them.  They are not perfumes for wearing, but for evoking your emotion and imagination.

[Relationship to Art and Education]

For Aromascape of Singapore, the relationship of the work to the theme can be seen as follows:  the purpose of working with art academy sudents is to raise the awareness for their sense of smell.  As these students will be in their late teens or early 20s, they have the maximum physical capability of smelling, because as you get old you can smell less.  They still have the clear memories from their youth that are attached very much to smell.  It's the perfect mement for them to learn about smell and totally different dimensions will open up in front of them.

 

 

WORKSHOP

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More documentations regarding the workshop

http://scent-lab.blogspot.com/search/label/%5BAROMASCAPE%20OF%20SINGAPORE%5D

 

EXHIBITION

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NO. 1: IXORA FLOWERS (AMARYLLIS SEAH HSUEH TING)

NO. 2: SUGARCANE (BRENDAN POH KAI JIE)

NO. 3: CHEESEBURGER (NG YI HUI MARY ANN)

NO. 4: NEWSPAPER (KANAKO FURUKAWA)

NO. 5: CEMENT (ORANJE)

NO. 6: RICE (AMARYLLIS SEAH HSUEH TING)

NO. 7: INDIAN INCENSE (SHERYL LAW)

NO. 8: BAK KUT TEH (HO BAOXIN)

NO. 9: BARBECUE (MACK ZHI FANG WENDY)

NO.10: CHAR KWAY TEOW (DEVA RAJ)

NO.11: COFFEE (YU DANYA)

NO.12: TAIWAN SAUSAGE (CHUA TIAN LI)

NO.13: GARAM CIGARETTES (HEMA LATA D/O VEERAMOHAN)

 

EXHIBITION DETAILS

5- 16 January 2011 (Mon-Sun 10am - 7pm Fri 10am - 9pm)

Glass Porch, Level 2, Singapore Art Museum

World Premie (Supported by Singapore Art Museum)

as a part of: Fringe Festival @ Singapore

http://www.singaporefringe.com/#/back-to-school/AROMASCAPE-OF-SINGAPORE-

relating workshop: 29 - 30 Dec 2010, 11am - 2pm at Singapore Art Museum

 

(OR FIND CONFUSION...) 

permanent installation at Amsterdam Tulip Museum (2012)

 

Put your head in these tulips.  You will notice they smell of various bulbous flowers: Tulip, Hyacinth and Narcissus (Daffodil).  But which one carries the actual scent of tulips?

 

 

 

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Ordered by: Amsterdam Tulip Museum

Concept: Maki Ueda

Realization: Nezu Aymo Architect

Special thanks to Omega Ingredients (www.omegaingredients.co.uk)

Makoto Yokomizo (architect) x Maki Ueda (olfactory artist)

pavilion (2013)

 

It's a void space dedicated for touching, hearing, and smelling. The architect Makoto Yokomizo designed a semi-dark space that makes you feel like "endless space that is vast and misty", and Maki Ueda made the scent diffusion system for it. As you walk into the space you cannot see at instance, then you  automatically switch your priority to hearing, touching, and smelling. As you get used to the darkness you see no end in the space. There's no object but an environment. As you explore in the space you smell differently - 3 principle smells are used here like RGB for monitors. Thus, smells navigate you in the space. There's no meaning given to the smells, but it's you who give them.  The focus is your sense of smell, movement, and orientation.

 

Period: July 23 (TUE)- Aug 9 (FRI), 2013. 10:00-18:00. 

Place: Okamura Garden Court Show Room

    New Otani Garden Court 3F, Kioi-cho, Chiyoda-ku, 102-0094, Tokyo Japan

Tel : 03-5276-2001

 

Organized by: Okamura Co. Ltd. 

Support: Yamamoto Perfumery Co. Ltd.

 

Development: (link to my blog)

http://witch-lab.blogspot.jp/search/label/%5B白い闇%5D

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設計図2

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OLFACTORY LABYRINTH VER.1.1

installation (2013)

 

 [Premier] ATSUKOBAROUGH, Tokyo, 11.09.2013. Sharing Vibes Exhibition

[Dates] 11.09.2013. (wed) - 29.09.2013. (sun)

[Place] ATSUKOBAROUGH - arts drinks talk - (next to Bunkamura)

http://www.atsukobarouh.com/

[Artists] Maki UEDA/Kensyu SHINTSUBO/Fuyuki YAMAKAWA

[Curator] Yukiko SHIKATA

 

[Event] Maki UEDA workshop "Search the space like a dog vol.2" 21.09. sat. 17:00~19:00

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■Introduction - move, smell, and sense -

This looks like an installation with bottles hanging from the ceiling in a grid. It is actually a space designed for olfactory exploration.

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 a 20-cm distance.

Each grid is about 40 to 50 cm, just wide enough for a person to walk through while smelling.

Three different fragrant oils are used, and they are placed in such way that a person can trace a smell from bottle to bottle. They are placed in clusters or in lines, like a Reversi game. It's a small, playful "olfactory labyrinth" that also tests your sense of smell.

The construction is flexible, allowing the level of complexity to be adjusted to any target group during exhibition. In this way, it is a platform for experimentation and there is no final, fixed form.

 

■Focus

The main focus is the olfactory experience rather than the scent itself. Often in olfactory installations or exhibitions, the focus is on guessing a smell or evoking memories and feelings. I think, though, that smell is, in itself, neutral. It's the audience who attribute meanings such as "I dislike this smell" or "This is the smell I knew from my grandma's house" after processing olfactory information in their brains. My memories are different from yours, so how can I assume that what is a "sweet smell" to me will have the same meaning to you?

Such meanings to smells are given from personal experiences and histories. This is why I chose not to give meanings to smells in this project. I rather want to be open to surprising olfactory experiences that we normally wouldn’t encounter in daily life. Omni-directional olfactory experience has been forgotten in our modern life, so reviving it is especially interesting. You can become convinced that human beings, much like dogs, have the ability to sniff around and navigate themselves using their sense of smell.

In our society it's not considered good manners to talk about smell, but it's recommended to do so here!

 

■Background

In recent years my key words have been "movement" and "olfactory experience". I've been researching omni-directional olfactory experiences within a certain space. The sensations created by actively walking around and finding smells are very different from just passively receiving smells. I think I'm one of the few artists researching this discipline.

I’ve wanted to make an "olfactory labyrinth" for years. I’ve thought about a big construction in an open space, or an interactive installation with sensors. But I first wanted to experiment at low cost, resulting in this first prototype for future development.

I selected the fragrant oils while wondering how to make a finer resolution of smells within a certain space. Without my sponsor Yamamoto Perfumery Co., Ltd. such experimentation would never have been possible.

I tried to exclude visual and audible aspects in this work as much as possible. I let the work explain itself rather than doing so in words. Instead smells and space communicate with your physical sensations, allowing you to project images and play sounds in the mind. I believe that smell possesses such power.

Maki UEDA

www.ueda.nl

 

Supported by:

Yamamoto Perfumery Co., Ltd.

http://www.ypcyy.co.jp/

 

 

[Cutatorial Notes]

On "Sharing Vibes: As Part of Resonating Place"

 

“Sharing Vibes” is presented as a place where we may discover the world anew by starting to recall the diverse invisible and immaterial information―odors, water veins, flows, etc.―that we usually cannot sense, or fail to notice.

 

It is in this space that Fuyuki Yamakawa, Maki Ueda and Kenshu Shintsubo will attempt to originate a resonance using, sounds, odors, photography and other media. All three avoid confining their works into distinct media or meanings, and instead regard them as potential information so to prompt us to open up our perceptions and thinking.

 

Yamakawa showcases a new work that makes underground water flows audible and visible. The research he carried out to create this work will also be presented in the form of a portable map that visitors can take with them in order to feel the water veins in Shibuya. Ueda's “labyrinth” composed of multiple odors is a place where each person gives active attention to the sense of smell. Shintsubo’s works vividly capture the phases of water that circulates the world through the atmosphere and trees.

 

The mutual interaction among the works,the mutual influence between those who share the space, and the new vibrations that are born through the multiple resonances between the space, the works and the people... A place each of us participate as a part of the exhibition, of the space and of the world. “Sharing Vibes” does not end.  (Yukiko SHIKATA, Curator)

 

 

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