Originally published on http://www.cafleurebon.com 12 August, 2017
If I’m not sniffing, choosing, wearing, talking, or THINKING about perfume, chances are I’m READING about perfume. Blogs, journals, books of any kind, I am obsessed with perfume. Many perfumista friends share the same frantic attraction with reading and books in general; we are constantly chatting about what to read next, a series we loved, what’s in the stack at our bedsides or on our Kindles. And when the subject is books about perfume, we damn-near roll our eyes into ours heads with delight. So, have you read NEZ (Nez is pronounced NAY, and is the French word for nose) Magazine? In March 2017 NEZ, released their third edition in English, and it is my fervent desire that there will be more English editions to follow.
NEZ Magazine is described as follows… “The only periodical to be dedicated to scent and the sense of smell. Bringing together articles, interviews, surveys and critical analysis with an olfactory focus, Nez challenges us to use our noses to explore the world. Art, literature, science, history, perfume… Nez is unique in its diverse and informative approach and helps us understand how our sense of smell connects us to the world. Every six months passionate contributors, including scientists, perfumers, writers, scholars, historians, photographers and artists, fill the richly illustrated pages. Each issue also comes with fragrance samples allowing the reader to dive right into the ‘smell-scape’. Nez combines the varied editorial style of a magazine with the quality and longevity of a book. A large proportion is obviously given over to fragrance and perfumery – where the industry is heading, product reviews and promoting the cultural heritage of the art.”
The newest edition of NEZ is 144 pages and focuses on “The Sex Of Scent”. Beautifully composed and printed on almost card stock-weight paper, with text and pictures in an engaging limited soft-color palate, NEZ is a both a joy and delight to hold and read. As befits a publication regarding senses, it is not only interesting and intellectually skewed, but also a tactile pleasure in your hands. Two articles by members of the Ellena dynastical perfume family caught my eye right away. Ellena Père, Jean-Claude writes an “Open Letter To A Junior Perfumer” describing the scentsory journey a young nose may expect upon entering the business.
Here is an excerpt from Jean Claude Ellena, subtitled Admiration:
“Your choices will determine the way you dream, think, imagine, create and live. Edmond Roudnitska admired Aime and Jacques Guerlain, Francois Coty and Ernest Beaux. They created Jicky, L’Heure bleue, Mitsouko, Shalimar, L’Origan, Chypre, Muguet des bois, Bois des îles, Gardénia, Cuir de Russie and No. 5. These fragrances were created before the 1930s. In 1935, Edmond Roudnitska was 30-years-old. That’s the age where we begin to open up to others. There is a trace of Chypre de Coty, a fragrance he truly admired, in Femme by Rochas, which he would deny, and also in Eau fraîche by Dior, which he would accept, and in Eau sauvage and Diorella. I admire Edmond Roudnitska, Henry and Guy Robert, Jean-Paul Guerlain, Josephine Catapano and their creations such as Eau d’Hermès,Diorissimo, Diorella, Chanel No. 19, Calèche, Chamade and Fidji. These are the perfumes of my 20s, when I was starting out.”
A few pages later, M. Ellena’s daughter Céline, an extraordinary perfumer in her own right, takes on the role of a “Flâneuse Olfactíf” as she strolls and smells her way from Paris’ Pigalle to Sácre-Cœur.
An excerpt from Céline Ellena :“I am a strange person. Leaving the Moulin Rouge in the early afternoon of Wednesday December 21st, I climb the Butte Montmartre. I walk around the neighborhood from sex shops to confessional boxes, from whores to saints. Each new aroma hits me with a jolt, and I make a note of everything I can smell in a little book. I am a voyeur of odors. I am a perfumer.” Just one of the many beautiful poetic moments scattered throughout the 144 pages of NEZ Magazine.
Disclosure: NEZ was purchased by me.The opinions are my own. Michelyn purchased her copy as well.
–Robert Herrmann, Editor
-Art Direction and contributions: Michelyn Camen, Editor-in-Chief
You can purchase NEZ in the USA online at such stockists as Luckyscent.com and Indigo Perfumery and sells for $24 plus shipping. Shipping charges vary by retailer
Thanks to Dominique Brunel, The Publishing Director, we have a copy of NEZ Magazine for one registered reader worldwide, so be sure to register if you have not done so. To be eligible please let us know what appeals to you about Roberts’ review, if you have heard of NEZ and where you live. Draw closes 8/15/2017.
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