in Collaborations , Videos | 08 SEP 20

‘Very Iconic, and yet so Intimate’

Lolita Cros explores Kettle’s Yard, through the lens of Portrait of a Lady

in Collaborations , Videos | 08 SEP 20
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Combining the visions of multiple artists, while bearing the inimitable stamp of its founder: the parallel between a great private art collection and Editions de Parfums Frédéric Malle – an eclectic range resulting from great perfumers being given total freedom to create by Frédéric Malle – are intriguing. To mark the 20th anniversary of Editions de Parfums Frédéric Malle this year, Frieze pursued this parallel by inviting two art experts to each explore a significant art collection founded by an individual, in relation to a perfume of their choosing from the Frédéric Malle range.

Independent curator and art dealer Lolita Cros visits Kettle’s Yard in Cambridge, UK, where the distinctive collection of important 20th century art founded by Jim and Helen Ede is evocatively installed across an intimate space. Cros considers this exquisite, idiosyncratic array through the lens of the perfume Portrait of a Lady, a ‘portrait of modern grace’ created by Dominique Ropion. 

Exploring the collection at Kettle’s Yard, Cros is struck by the delicately balanced aspects of the hang, comparing this to Ropion’s balance of elements in the perfume’s composition. The way the Edes installed a bronze sculpture by Henri Gaudier-Brzeska to interplay with changing light throughout the day and the year reminds her of the unique interactions of a Frédéric Malle perfume and the skin of each individual wearer. In a hand drawing by Constantin Brancusi after his sculpture The Kiss (1907) she identifies the same blend of the iconic and the intimate which for her summarizes Portrait of a Lady.

Founded in 2000, Editions de Parfums Frédéric Malle was conceived to champion perfumery. Frédéric Malle acts as a ‘publisher’, granting renowned perfumers with very different characters and styles total freedom to create. As a result, the Editions de Parfums collection is as rich as it is eclectic, providing everyone with the opportunity to find the perfume that connects with their personality.

Discover the collection at:

Follow Lolita Cros at: @l0l0lita