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Victoria Adam | Closing event 'With regards to Anne who is not happy...' | Saturday 16 Jan f

Victoria Adam, Gareth Bell-Jones, Pascale Cumming-Benson, Susanna Davies-Crook, Alice Hattrick, William Tullett

January 16th 2016 2pm – 5pm Kingsgate Project Space

“She is not very happy with life. Anne tends to feel trapped and insecure about herself and her ideas. Her income and education are below average. She is from the South. Typically, Annes are under 25 or over 50, the ‘ages of anxiety’. Anne is highly conscious of the appearance of others and of being feminine in the traditional sense. Therefore, she has a high discernment of smell and a liking for highly perfumed products and fragrances that last. Perfume and fragrance brighten Anne’s day”*.

*Consumer profiling by Quest International reproduced in J. Byrne-Quinn, Perfume, People, Perceptions and Products in eds Steve Van Toller and George H Dodd, Perfumery: The Psychology and Biology of Fragrance, 1994

An intimate event set within Victoria Adam’s residency exhibition at Kingsgate Project Space, five invited artists, academics, curators and writers will consider scent, cleanliness and commercialism tangentially, and in relation to the research and work of Kingsgate residency artist Victoria Adam.

This event is free, however there is limited capacity.

To RSVP please email


Pascale Cumming-Benson and Victoria Adam exchange adjacent languages

Writer and fragrance specialist at Les Senteurs Pascale Cumming-Benson will deliver a sensual monologue in the language of 'the nose' in response to objects and scents selected by artist Victoria Adam.

William Tullett will give a talk on his research, firstly locating it in the emerging arena of sensory studies

He will then discuss two key examples from his work - ideas about the cleanliness of public space and attitudes to the use of perfume - and suggest some creative resonances between this research and the ideas of waste, ephemerality, and identity that are broached in the exhibition1.

Susanna Davies-Crook on The Jaguar and the Civet

The civet is a small mammal and the jaguar a large wild cat. In the wild they are a natural coupling of predator and prey. The civet’s glands are evolved to emit a strong musk, which the jaguar tracks and is drawn to. Civetone, derived from the civet is used in luxury perfumes. Jaguars are used in luxury goods adverts. Out of all the perfumes, the jaguar is most responsive to CKone. The jaguar and the civet chasing their tails in a loop cycle of branding, image and consumerism.

Gareth Bell-Jones will discuss 'Nacre', his written response to Victoria Adam's work. ‘Nacre’ is short story of filth and pheromone trails ‘I watched them on the floor for a while, vaguely disgusted but engrossed. There were different types, big and small, a lot of eggs and larva, a big queen in the middle, ants with wings. They were protecting the eggs. I got a bottle of bleach and one of Flash and squirted it all over them. I found another colony under a plant-pot a week later’2.

Alice Hattrick will contribute a text on perfume, art and autobiography ‘…S recently bought a bottle of Le Labo’s Santal 33(2011). She messaged me from Liberty: I don’t think I can do this. It’s so much money. I messaged her back: Buy it. It will make your life better.’3

1 William Tullett, The odoriferous 18th century, Life in Scents, 2014 2 Gareth Bell-Jones, Excerpt from Nacre, Kingsgate Workshops commission, 2015 3 Alice Hattrick, According to Alice, A-or-ist Issue no. 1, 2015, pp.15-16


Victoria Adam graduated from the Royal Academy of Art in 2015 and previously attended the Slade. Recent exhibitions include ( ゜_゜)彡 at Caustic Coastal, Manchester, 2014, Chalk Blush at Kinman, London, 2014 and the forthcoming exhibition Leks at Marian Cramer Projects, Amsterdam. Victoria Adam’s first solo exhibition in London is a collection of new works formed through a six month Materials Residency with a focus on clay and ceramics. Set within Kingsgate Workshops, where artists and craftspeople converge; Adam was invited to explore and test new media and methods and how they might extend her practice.

Gareth Bell-Jones is an independent curator and writer, currently Director/Curator of Flat Time House (FTHo). For four and a half years to 2014 he worked as a curator at Wysing Arts Centre, Cambridge, where he programmed residencies, new commissions, exhibitions, performance events, retreats, symposia and three music festivals. He is currently working on programming for Dalston Music Festival and an exhibition project on the theme of Boredom for Nýlistasafnið (The Living Art Museum), Reykjavík, in April 2016.

Pascale Cumming-Benson is a writer and professional fragrance specialist at Les Senteurs. She graduated from the Royal College of Art MA in Critical Writing with a thesis entitled ‘Osmic: An Essay on the Forms of Smell’. This essay that traces the attitudes to the olfactory, collecting disparate moments, words and ideas that resonate with how the sense of smell has come to be thought of and considers how the neutered space evacuated by smell was to be colonised by artificially produced scents.

Susanna Davies-Crook is an artist and writer based in London and previously Berlin. She graduated with an MA from the Royal College of Art in 2014 and is currently in residence with #temporarycustodians and associate artist at Salford University, invited by Helen Kaplinsky and Maurice Carlin. As a writer and editor, over the past five years she has contributed writing on contemporary art to publications including LEAP, Dazed & Confused, Sleek, Harper’s Bazaar Art Arabia, Frieze, Twin, The White Review and Thisistomorrow.

Alice Hattrick is a writer and producer based in London. She is a Contributing Editor of EROS journal and Co-Editor of A-or-ist, and has written for various publications including Frieze and The White Review. Her text ‘Olfactory Fatigue’ can be found on Frieze blog

William Tullett is a PhD researcher in the Department of History at Kings College London. His research, funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, is on the history of smells, smelling, and the senses in England between 1660 and 1832.


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