Category: Parfumerie Générale

Parfumerie Générale Arabian Horse 3.1, 2016

Perfumer Pierre Guillaume. The name fits. From the very opening Arabian Horse creates a setting that evokes equestrian affairs. It smells like farms, barns and steeplechases. The topnotes are strong and urgent, but the stables-and-tack mis-en-scène is just exposition and dramatic build-up. The heartnotes are the reveal. The pacing of the perfume reminds me of the actual experience of approaching…

San Francisco and memory

(an aside) My strongest perfume-locale association is in San Francisco. Double, actually. I was in San Francisco with my husband David when his company were performing at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts a few years ago. While they were in the theater during the day I went to see a show a friend had curated at The Contemporary Jewish…

Parfumerie Générale Cuir Venenum, 2004

Image source unknown Perfumer Pierre Guillaume. Cuir Venenum takes orange blossom down two parallel courses, neither of which is expected. Track # 1. Similar to iris, underneath orange blossom’s sweetness there is a sweaty quality that gives the flower its dimension and complexity. Cuir Venenum capitalizes on the blossom’s underbelly by steering it in a yeasty, fermented direction, giving Cuir Venenum…

Parfumerie Générale Cuir d’Iris, 2005

Photo lifted from Gordon Parks. Pierre Guillaume Perfume evokes.  It doesn’t recreate nature and it doesn’t tell stories.  Successful perfumery creates richness and a complexity that allows for many possibilities, for varied experiences among wearers. At the center of Parfumerie Générale’s Cuir d’Iris is an active imbalance, a contest.  From start to finish there’s never a blend or compromise.  The…

Parfumerie Générale Louanges Profanes, 2008

Perfumer  Pierre Guillame When I think about perfume I tend to rely on literary or verbal devices.  By literary I don’t mean particularly lofty in nature, I just mean that we use tricks of the tongue and the pen to get at perfume.  I’ll use visual allusions, fictions of memory, description and tidbits of narrative.  The trouble is that all…

Parfumerie Générale un Crime Exotique, 2007

Perfumer Pierre Guillaume. The spice cabinet has been neglected in perfumery.  I imagine this has to do with perfume producers not wanting to be pinned down by the literal, the prosaic, the kitchen.  From the consumer perspective, I don’t know if there is much of a market for culinary spice perfumery, but the need is probably met by aromatherapeutic products. …

Parfumerie Générale l’Ombre Fauve, 2007

Perfumer Pierre Guillaume This perfume’s richness and sexiness comes from such a basic composition that its novelty is startling.  How can it possibly have taken this long for somebody to put patchouli, amber and musk, components joined since the invention of perfumery, in just this combination? The patchouli, amber and musk, along with incense and spices, fit together so perfectly…