Exhibition: Aromatic Art (Re-)reconstructed: In Search of Lost Scents

02/24/2017 | 05/23/2017

Main building Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, first floor, Balcony 1 Exhibition space

The exhibition will show how internationally renowned artists have been exploring the impact of smell and are stretching the boundaries of ‘visual’ art.

University Library

Art, Culture and History


Themes include identity, memory and mapping. Birthe Leemeijer for example, reconstructed the smell of a typical Dutch landscape- the ‘polder’- which is bound to become part of our lost ‘volatile heritage’. Gayil Nalls made it possible to experience the entire world through one inhalation with her ‘World Sensorium’, And Sue Corke and Hagen Betzwieser even created the smell of the moon. Surprisingly olfactory art is not only a topic for today’s artists. Already a century ago Futurists and Surrealists such as F.T. Marinetti and Marcel Duchamp were adding olfactory layers to their sculptures, exhibition spaces and poetry recitals. These lost smells and more works of art will be on view and sniff in the exhibition space at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.

Participating artists:
Marcel Duchamp (FR)
F.T. Marinetti (IT)
Peter De Cupere (BE)
Job Koelewijn(NL)
Gayil Nalls (US)
Birthe Leemeijer (NL)
Hagen Betzwieser & Sue Corck (GE and UK)
Esther Brakenhoff (NL)

The Exhibition will be on smell during special workshops:
March 3rd 2017: 17:30 – 18.45 - FULL
March 16th  2017: 17:30 – 18.45 - FULL
April 10th  2017: 17.30 – 18.45 - FULL

All workshops are full.  

This project is a collaboration between Caro Verbeek - embedded researcher at the faculty of Humanities Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Wende Wallert - art curator of the University Library (UL) Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, CLUE+, Graduate School, International Flavours & Fragrances and NWO.

The exhibition is open during opening hours of the Main Building Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. The exhibition area is at the Main Building, first floor, near the Aula. Please be aware other activities also take place in that area.