*Article published in CaFleureBon. Collage, styling, and photography by me.
edible iris drops from perfume.sucks Photo by dana of dana
Before heading out to Esxence this year I gathered my senses, dove deep into google for contacts, crossed my fingers, and sent everyone I could find an invitation to fill out a short survey. I titled it, simply, “the nosey questionnaire” and went all out with questions like: “what’s the next popular material to fall out of fashion?”, “who’s your perfect buyer”?, and “what’s your favorite swear?” (sorry, had to). Andreas Wilhelm (Wilhelm Perfume, Sarah Baker, L’Adone, and perfume.sucks, FIFI Award winner and all-around awesome hunter-gatherer) was one of the first to answer it—and his witty, realistic, and refreshingly playful words made even more sense once I saw him in person. (#fact: personal interaction always adds to the picture, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise). Andreas’ latest project, perfume.sucks, is built on a transparency model that’s both needed and slightly intimidating: every formula has been rejected by other brands, and is displayed, raw, straight on the bottle. No context, no explanation, no scintillating marketing (except for his iris gourmandises, of course).
So how, then, in this era of complex stories and insinuating visuals, does one go about describing these “alcoholic solutions. Sprayable”?
This is how.
perfume.sucks Black Photo by dana
ASPECT: Tall, strong, you can’t not see me. Night creature.
PREFERENCES: Loves metal and menthol. Can keep going for a long time. Secret meditator.
HOW OTHERS DESCRIBE ME: woody, pulpy, heady, armpits, leather jacket, cat.
ANIMAL SPIRIT: goat
PERSONAL PHILOSOPHY: Nothing matters. Not even Nietzche.
FAVORITE COLOR: red
perfume.sucks -Yellow. Photo by dana
ASPECT: No body to speak of. Creature of dusk.
PREFERENCES: Silence, nature, high vibrations, cyclicity, oneness…as long as it’s silent.
HOW OTHERS DESCRIBE ME: Others can’t feel me unless I want them to.
ANIMAL SPIRIT: bumblebee
PERSONAL PHILOSOPHY: There’s no wrong; the wrong is just a longer way to get to the right.
FAVORITE COLOR: orange
perfume.sucks Blue Photo by dana
ASPECT: Tall, lean, you can’t not see me. Morning person.
PREFERENCES: I love early runs and fresh sheets.
HOW OTHERS DESCRIBE ME: neat; uppity; friend-next-door; always ready; inventor of the scrunchie
ANIMAL SPIRIT: unicorn
PERSONAL PHILOSOPHY: Don’t let them see you. If they do, be terminally delightful.
FAVORITE COLOR: yellow
perfume.sucks – Purple. Photo by dana
ASPECT: Thin and stringy, striking, studied, stunning
PREFERENCES: Velour. Sasha, Andy, David, and all the other cool cats at the Studio (54)
HOW OTHERS DESCRIBE ME: excessive and painfully prolific
ANIMAL SPIRIT: orca
PERSONAL PHILOSOPHY: create make fabricate invent
FAVORITE COLOR: green
perfume.sucks Green. Photo by dana
ASPECT: Sun-kissed, thick, smooth, perky; unibrow; dimples.
PREFERENCES: Maximalism, expressionism, overt feelings, continuity; would rather suffer together with others than be happy on one’s own.
HOW OTHERS DESCRIBE ME: always there, but always slightly off; gay; lover of life; sunny.
ANIMAL SPIRIT: monkey
PERSONAL PHILOSOPHY: if you’re going to San Francisco, don’t forget some flowers in your hair
FAVORITE COLOR: blue
(official notes: ambroxan, hedione, cardamom, olibanum, black pepper, labdanum, citruses, mandarin orangev, magnolia; other perceived notes: cannabis, green apple (or green mango?), milk, lemon drops, coffee, burnt rubber, hot steel, paint, rootbeer)
perfume.sucks Red. Photo by dana
ASPECT: Tall and muscular, shiny, smooth, clean
PREFERENCES: Loudness and speed, precise driving, risky (big) money; side passion in overting misogyny and calling out night snackers. Religious exerciser.
HOW OTHERS DESCRIBE ME: Strong and lethal, undeterred, like a cobra.
ANIMAL SPIRIT: puma
PERSONAL PHILOSOPHY: Whoever feeds you controls you.
FAVORITE COLOR: indigo
Living Coral Photo by dana
NAME: Living coral
ASPECT: plump and rosy, soft-skinned, rubensian, curly nests of coppery hair in all the good places, exaggerated features you can’t look away from
PREFERENCES: togas, grapes, thick friends lazily waving ostrich feather fans, decadent desserts, exotic animal likings, casual philosophy, vicarious traveling
HOW OTHERS DESCRIBE ME: shallowest smart brain ever
ANIMAL SPIRIT: secretaire bird
PERSONAL PHILOSOPHY: de gustibus
FAVORITE COLOR: Violet
Disclaimer: Samples of perfume.sucks kindly provided by Andreas (danke!). My opinions are my own.
–dana sandu, Contributor who also did the awesome photo collages