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Fragrance | On Forgetting

On Forgetting | Filling the Flask, perfumer - Catherine Haley Epstein, box by Rory Sparks, photo by Ann Ploeger

On Forgetting | Filling the Flask, perfumer – Catherine Haley Epstein, box by Rory Sparks, photo by Ann Ploeger

In 2010 I began creating artwork around the theme of Psyche’s journey where she encounters four seemingly impossible tasks, all in an effort to reunite with Eros. For the third task she is asked to fill a flask from the rushing waters of the River Styx. The river and waters have many meanings, one of which is the waters of forgetfulness. It is in this context that the idea was born to create fragrances, fill a flask, that would help to erase some of the nuisance and noise of the past to create clarity and room for living in the present.

The fragrances all carry the thread of the woods, and the use of a burn to alleviate the burdens of the past. As you move through the woods and get deeper, the forest becomes even mossier and more burn is required. The four fragrances are a journey where each is more warm than the previous, culminating with a giant bonfire of burnt seashells, amber fossils and cedar. Envisioned as a set that would be at the ready in any well equipped medicine chest, the fragrances resided as such over the course of the exhibition in an imaginary person’s medicine cabinet – the audience was encouraged to try on the fragrance which best suited their time for forgetting.

The four fragrances are:

Forget Last Night
Forget 5 Years Ago
Forget 10 Years Ago
Forget 20 Years Ago

Catherine Haley Epstein, “On Forgetting | Filling the Flask”, installation image,

 All fragrances are available to sample. Please contact me if you are interested.

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