Sublime destruction and fleting utopia, IT WAS A TIME THAT WAS A TIME is a unique smoky ambergris fragrance created between British artist Shezad Dawood & French perfumer Nicolas Bonneville.

Borrowing its title from Shezad Dawood’s latest film (2015, 16.27 mins commissioned by Pioneer Works in Brooklyn), IT WAS A TIME THAT WAS A TIME is the result of a free-form, collaborative filmmaking experiment, whereby participants took turns documenting each other living in a speculative community formed in response to a theoretical environmental cataclysm where rules of society, gender and relationships are given new expression.

Through a collaboration with French perfumer Nicolas Bonneville an experiment was conducted to attempt to make an accompanying scent to this film that combined notes of destruction and decay, with beauty and novel forms of intimacy. As the experiment proceeded, it moved from being an accompanying scent, to the scent of the landscape, to the liberated scent of the people forming this imagined community. Togther we invite you to step into a post-flood world: «My love, my love, do you understand that you are neither man nor woman but all of it?» SD

Released as both a sensory element in the Pioneer Works exhibition and a unique perfume, the fragrance contains dark, smoky, and incensed woods mixed with ambergris, marine overtones, and a touch of immortelle absolute.


IT WAS A TIME THAT WAS A TIME, Shezad Dawood, 2015 (film extract)

Presented as part of the French Institute Alliance Française (FIAF)’s Crossing the Line Festival 2015 Special thanks to Fragrance Resources, SCENTYS and SprayTheWorld.