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High Note: Exhibit to Look at Fragrance Over the Centuries

“Quand Le Parfum Portait Remède” (“When Perfume Cured”) is the name and subject of a polysensorial exhibition at the Musée de Saint-Antoine L’Abbaye.

PARIS — “Quand Le Parfum Portait Remède” (“When Perfume Cured”) is the name and subject of a polysensorial exhibition at the Musée de Saint-Antoine L’Abbaye and a book penned by Annick Le Guérer.

This story first appeared in the October 1, 2009 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

For the exhibit, which is on in Saint Antoine l’Abbaye, France, Givaudan perfumer Daniela Andrier and International Flavors & Fragrance’s Dominique Ropion recreated 14 plant-based fragrances with purported health benefits from recipes dating from the Middle Ages through to the 18th century. The exhibit, for which Le Guérer oversaw scientific elements, runs from March to November yearly through November 2011.

Six of the scents are presented in Le Guérer’s 98-page book, which is published in French by Editions du Garde-Temps and sold in France’s bookstores and at the Musée de Saint-Antoine L’Abbaye for 29 euros, or $42.25 at current exchange.

In past centuries, fragrance served to protect man from illness, explained Guérer, who added, today, natural, organic and curative scents have started to come into vogue. That’s due in part to the rise in demand for organic and natural products in general, plus consumers’ concern for the environment.