Currently showing at Reykjavik Art Museum is an exhibition of fragrances, a joint olfactory interpretation from Andrea Maack and Hugin Þór Arason for a vision of the museum of the future.

Interval is the first collaborative work of Maack and Arason, building on Maack’s background as a visual artist working with scent and on Arason’s interest in transforming the role of exhibition space. In a process of visual creativity, Maack creates artworks that in turn inspire the fragrances themselves.

The exhibition takes the form of a period room of an unspecified future, a time whose essence is presented as a collection of fragrances. The scents have guided Maack and Arason in determining the nature of the installation, which is meant to acknowledge the elusive and temporal qualities of scent.

Two monumental, stepped aluminium and glass structures – somewhere between stadium seating and boutique shelves – span the length of the large gallery, forming an aisle or catwalk down the centre of the hall. Upon these structures sit several hundred handmade paper bags; their precise alignment, strict forms and limited colour palette recall early 20th-century formalism. Over 30 individual fragrances emanate from the bags in the first row on either side and combine in the air to form a scent that varies from one spot in the room to another.

The story of Maack's perfume brand, which originated through art exhibitions in an experimental process, is captured beautifully in this video by Thorbjörn Ingason:

The exhibition runs at the Reykjavik Art Museum until 1 September.

Reykjavik Art Museum
Tryggvagata 17
101 Reykjavik

Images courtsey of Andrea Maack.