quarta-feira, janeiro 04, 2012

Journey to the Heart of Fragrance - IFF

Primeiramente, Feliz 2012 a todos!!! Espero que tenham festejado muito o começo deste novo ano e também renovado todas esperanças e sonhos...

Como ainda estou ocupada tentando colocar uma vida em 3 malas para me mudar para Grasse nesta sexta-feira, este post será somente para apresentar uma boa matéria publicada na resvista The Perfume Magazine e que me lembrou muito a minha experiência com minha própria visita a IFF em New York em Agosto passado. Mas nunca poderia ter descrito tão bem quanto escreveu Neil Sternberg. Congratulations Neil!

Journey to the Heart of Fragrance
By Neil T. Sternberg

There’s something magical about New York City during the holidays.  Despite the cold and the crowds – and even dodging the occasional shower – there is a feeling of warmth and anticipation that you find everywhere.

Sitting alone in a crowded corner pub in Manhattan, finishing a late dinner, I was feeling it.  But it wasn’t just holiday fragrance shopping I was anticipating.  In a few short hours, I would be living a fragrance geek’s dream - inside one of the “big boys” of fragrance.

When IFF invited me to visit their Creative Laboratory in New York City, they didn’t have to wait for a reply.  Ever since I picked up Chandler Burr’s wonderful book, The Perfect Scent, I’ve been trying to piece together a true mental picture of the F&F industry’s innards.  Burr made it all sound fascinating, and I wanted more.  I wanted to see it all.  I wanted to smell it all.  I wanted to be there.

And not just that.  The scientist in me wanted to learn IFF’s deepest secrets – to see what it was that made them a two-and-a-half-billion-dollar business, with offices in the greatest cities of the world.  Would they hint at what they were up to?  Would they tantalize me with their proprietary technology?  Would they show me their crown jewels?  Even just a peek?

Done with dessert, I pulled out my wallet.  A whitish, rounded quartz pebble fell out of my pocket and clattered across the pub’s wooden floor.  I leaned over, picked it up, and put it back into my pocket.  Lost in the cacophony of the place, I don’t think anybody even noticed.

That pebble is important to me.  People may think it’s silly or superstitious – especially for a scientist – but I carry that pebble, from a beautiful forest in Kentucky, for spiritual reasons.  My dreams tell me that my spirit will go there someday, and I respect the goodness and the power of those dreams.  Yes, yes – I know.  When it comes down to brass tacks, I tend to trust the complicated predictions of modern science over the simple traditions of my very distant ancestors.  But still – thanks to my mother’s reverence for her heritage, and my father’s respect for native culture, I try to respect the importance of those traditions.  And even more than that, my gut just tells me that perhaps we underestimate the power of spirit.

Making sure I had my pebble, I paid my bill, returned to my hotel room, and got a good night’s sleep.  Perhaps I had dreams of GC-MS, olfactory receptors, and rational odorant design, but if so, I don’t remember them.

The building which houses the IFF Creative Laboratory and Sales Office in New York City is impressive.  It’s not a skyscraper by any means.  However, I quickly discovered how difficult it is to fit into a single camera shot.

IFF also has impressive security, despite its outward minimalism.  What you see is one door, one elevator, and one guard - who is almost certainly bigger than you.  If you’re expected, and he likes all of your answers, you get on the elevator.  I was relieved not to visit any of my imagined alternatives.

When you get off on the designated floor, there is a small landing area.  Step through some glass doors, and you are in a very, very, very impressive lobby.  It’s big.  And in Manhattan, that much empty space costs mucho dinero.  There is a single receptionist at a very substantial desk, where she takes your picture.  There are four large chairs nearby – dwarfed by the rest of the room.  However, I never sat down.  Who would want to?  The IFF lobby is like a shopping trip to Sephora, and more.

Though the room is redecorated periodically, parts of it are too good to change.  For starters, there is a garden of ornamental vetiver arranged in squares in the tiled floor.  Each square gives rise to a cube of waving green spikes, with a bottle of perfume floating above on a thin, metal pedestal.  The fragrances are all current and familiar – especially to this lover of modern fragrance.  I was oohing and aahing over the likes of Calvin Klein’s new ck one shock for him, the ladies’ Euphoria, Keith Urban Phoenix, the Bond no.9 I♥NY trio, and Beyoncé’s new fragrance, Pulse.  And yes – you can pick them up, sniff them, and even spray if you like. (clique aqui para ler o artigo completo)

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