We would like to open our contribution to SPAR virtual residency by posting this talk between Vandana Shiva and Rajiv Malhotra that we recently watched and would like to share with everyone, while thinking about the digital and the self:
This talk is close to the concerns and thoughts that we had developing our olfactory work RYXPER1126AE (2018). Fragrance is a very spatial and temporal medium. It is short and fleeting because there is a limit to sensory input. It is beyond language, it remains in the sensory domain. For us, it’s interesting to think of how much data a performance generates and how this can be transcribed? Or how can the direct bodily experience of smell become disseminated? You can send the fragrance sample in an envelope but you can’t send it quickly/digitally or collect and quantify easily, it would seem.
RYXPER1126AE (2018) was produced in collaboration with International Flavors and Fragrances Inc. on the basis of the air samples captured on site of the SULK performance staged in 2018 as part of ANTI – 6th Athens Biennial. The collection with the use of headspace technology carried out as integral to the choreography of the performance generated the fragrance- a synthetic molecular replica of the smell of the SULK performance. Thus, not only does RYXPER1126AE bear a poetic sign or memory of belonging to a certain intimate collective experience; it can also be understood as an olfactory method of documentation of performance and space. The performance itself and the works derived from it, deal with the idea of documentation (in its various forms) and implications of surveillance, collection, quantification and distribution of lived and shared experience and knowledge. Creating this work we were thinking about areas of life that are still seemingly resistant to surveillance and quantification as smell appears to be. RYXPER1126AE considers the textualization of such experience through the data it generates.