Monday, October 26, 2015

An expression of an olfactory hallucination; This is Not a Blue Bottle by Histoires de Parfums

This is Not a Blue Bottle by Histoires de Parfums


Just few weeks ago French niche perfume house Histoires de Parfums announced for their latest creation which will hit the markets by the end of the current year. A solid Klein blue colore bottle named "This is Not a Blue Bottle". This ironic title immediately rings a bell and reminds Marcel Duchamp's famous anti-art installation which is an porcelain urinal rotated 90 degrees and named Fountain which was a very challenging installation delivering a provocative statement behind: Art is something you piss on. More than Fountain, the perfume title fits to Réne Magritte's graphical painting The Treachery of Images. The artist painted his pipe realistically with a sentence written below the picture which emerges a paradoxical meaningful concept: "Ceci n'est pas une pipe" meaning "this is not a pipe", comes to mind. Both artists has strong claims for their conceptions. Magritte uses a realistic trick so common in surrealism and suggests "This is not my pipe and you can't stuff this pipe. This is picture of my pipe and if I write "This is a pipe" I lie."



Parallel to this upcoming release, in the world of perfume, there are some smash hit releases, not for the fragrances, but more for their provocative titles. Not a Perfume by Juliette has a Gun gained all attentions since the perfume was composed on one substance. The Sexiest Scent on the Planet, Ever, IMHO by 4160 Tuesdays and What We do in Paris is Secret by A Lab of Fire are the most frequent controversial titles. Christopher Brosius's perfume house, CB I Hate Perfume, evokes the same intriguing sense. Regardless to how the smells of these perfumes are, they are trying send a message and they are so successful in sales! Gérald Ghislain describes about This is Not a Blue Bottle:
"I have always felt that there is no rhyme or reason how scent makes us feel. It's a magnetic and primal sense... I made This is Not a Blue Bottle as a pre-concept, something that is only emerging, whose story does not exist until it is on the skin."
This is brilliant, Is it abstraction? Not only a perfume, A chorus of elementals, Blue tattoo on your skin, Bottle with a message.

Anyway, more than everything the medium itself is the most important part. How does it smell and how the smell delivers the message of BB (let me call this long title only by two initials of Blue Bottle).
The beginning made me rolled eye. You say this is that outstanding? No in fact this is that ordinary type of smell you skip over while in department stores, with shopping bags in hand, when have no clue to try a perfume from designer shelves or not. This is that awkward moment in chess when you can't move anything but the king who has no ability to defense! A perfume with no particular story behind, no concept. It's a smell which story begins on your skin!
The resemblance of BB to frequent "sport" spring/autumn masculine perfumes released over million in a batch, makes me rather intrigued. Why HdP with that portfolio releases such easy perfume? What it tries to say? If it is an easy going perfume you neglect easily, why is all this pompous ad campaign for? A fragrance with radiant blue color that insists to not be called so, however, people rely on their first trustable sense - vision - and would call it the blue one; in a probable dialogue with sales person. So there is something in the spirit of the perfume, something seemingly common but identified quite personal. The house suggests it reveals once opened on skin.

The fragrance opens so fresh and balmy, with boozy dimensions. Musk-oriented, aromatic, and bitter orange opening which promises for round warmer heart. Gradually hints of honey and crisp metallic geranium appear. According to the house's catalog there must be aldehyde note in the opening which I honestly can't get any. I'm not so good in chemistry and don't know too much about aldehyde but as far as I know this olfactory family has specific floral-like soapy smell.
BB has more than average longevity and enormous sillage. Very surprisingly, I've gained many positive feedback in just a couple of hours; roll eyes, Oh!s, Wows, and even "it's so sexy"... This is so strange. A perfume which resembles many random designer fragrances you can buy with about $40, but the feedback are about a super niche perfume! I can't certainly tell whether it's good or bad or whatsoever, but maybe it's all about skin... You should discover it.

Carpe Odor!

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