SILUETA EAU DE PARFUM
A PERFUME BECAUSE OF ANA MENDIETA
As the second of three new perfumes within Chronotope’s Citationals Series, and like Intra Venus EdP before it, Silueta Eau de Parfum pays homage to an artist whose output constitutes early and exciting contributions to the autotheoretical form—this time by celebrating an artist who emphasized the implicit representation of herself in her work to render into art her life in exile, how she felt torn away from her homeland. In Ana Mendieta’s Silueta series, we witness not herself but space where she once was and is no longer. In the imagery, what’s left is a trace of where she once was, but she’s disappeared.
It’s this that I attempt to render into perfumery with Silueta Eau de Parfum. To create it, I changed my process of constructing perfume entirely. For every project I’ve made before this, I developed the work directly on my own body—but for Silueta, I gave myself one rule: that the moment I placed the perfume on myself for the first time, that version of the perfume would necessarily become the final formula. This, in turn, would be a way to literally remove myself as much as possible from the finished product.Instead of using my body as a canvas, then, I built the perfume atop an accord I designed to represent myself—a trio of basenote materials present in Buen Camino, Playalinda, and Spite EdT. Then, I added two more steps to my self-imposed rules: I’d also remove this accord from the finished formula. And I’d forgo composing a list of scent notes so as not to influence customers to smell something different in the perfume than what they might of their own volition.
The finished formula of Silueta Eau de Parfum represents an experiment with perfume that tests its ability to deny its creator and express some of the key ideas found in Mendieta’s portraits—those concerning the natural versus the human-made, as well as an inquiry into the ephemeral, ideas about entropy…and what is implied when the creator of a piece of work is absent.