Her perfume inspirations seek to intensify the closeness of the mind/body relationship, to marry our animal and poetic natures.
She works in a thoroughly gothic sensibility identified with luxurious decadence, informed and fueled by a strong sense of the melancholy beauty of our vulnerable mortality.
She is the most multi-faceted perfumer I know of, incorporating her style and personal history within the wide range of her creative works. Founder of Scent of Alexis, co-founder of The House of Cherry Bomb Perfumes, she is also a painting and portfolio instructor at Ashcan Studio of Art and teacher of Perfume History through Art at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.
She has formally trained in opera, singing as a performance artist in two bands, Anima Animus Animal and Ondyne's Demise. These performances are an important part of her creative endeavor, while she enhances her expressions in music and writing and painting by formulating perfumes to expand on the moods of her original work in all artistic media.
The perfumes are expressive of a focused gothic style and persona, driven by a generous and effusive creativity. There is something almost oceanic in the waves of ideas bonded to sensual forms of expression she spontaneously generates in such constant abundance.
|Body Made Luminous described|
She is an avid reader and writer of imaginative fiction and poetry, and is in the midst of writing a novel in urban sci-fi punk rock warrior style, setting scenes of romantic gothicism inside contemporary NYC with all its layers of past and present.
So much physical energy requires an outlet, so she undertook the serious study of ninja martial arts, and has become an enthusiastic practitioner.
All this while personally expressing an innate joyous warmth, which contrasts and sets off the goth image all the more. She acts as a compassionate friend to those in need within her line of sight, a cat woman who lives with five, and demonstrates generous devotion to her immediate and extended family, while constantly drawing ideas out of the air, to manifest as perfumes, poetry, songs, paintings, and as the fuel for creativity in all her favorite forms.
|I, Daughter of Kong: |
Exhibition with perfume for a animal/human
She steeped herself in research on how the ancient fragrances were made, as worn and ingested, carried in wine, in oils, and then leapt into the 18th century aesthetic of refined preciousness. Initially she learned about fragrance using three notes, then rose and floral notes as a glaze of transparency, similar to the techniques of glazing in oil painting, incorporating those principals in balance and strength both in color and smell.
|Alexis and Ken as American Artists in Rome|
She treasures her vivid recollections of nights and days spent staying in a jasmine covered building, the scent tempered by cat pee and oranges and brick and marble crumbling into dust. The impressions made by the ancient oxidized glass vessels in the museums led to her hand-gilded flacons and now her etched bottles.
Some primary inspirations for the perfumes continue to be literary, as focused in the essay by Foucault that led to Body Made Luminous. His essay moved her with its conviction that the romantic beauty of the body will not be understood without a lover's gaze, as it is a lover's obsession that brings out the body's luminosity, its heightened attractive liveliness, and the dark seductive essence of sensuality.
She is planning to assist with a lecture on The Vanity at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, to be set in the period rooms this Spring, something I avidly look forward to. She will perfume fans, handkerchiefs, note papers and other materials with scents appropriate to the the time period, to help make the information come alive for those attending. There will also be a full semester course at SVA in NYC offered this Spring where she will instruct and lecture on the uses of fine aromatic materials in art.
|Creature's Self in progress|
Her perfumes are available at IndieScents.com (Immortal Mine and Body Made Luminous) and directly from the perfumer at the Aroma M Atelier in Brooklyn, located on the 10th floor of 68 Jay street (#1007) in Brooklyn.
The studio is open to the public on Mondays and Fridays between 1 and 6 PM and also by appointment. You can contact them by email email@example.com, in case you are in NYC for a short visit, so you won't miss these perfumes.
Please visit her beautiful sites full of perfume, music, painting and mythological hybrids of humans and animals:
Body Made Luminous on Pinterest
Music by Ondyne's Demise, to listen to perfume by, while gazing at a lovely visual images: DIP
I love this music video Anima Animus Animal, Alexis Karl in full gothic flavor: Emshab J'ai Change
Foucault's Utopian Body essay
Writing excerpts of the first two chapters of her novel as well as a few song lyrics
Body Made Luminous with contact information for Alexis Karl.
Copyright 2013 Lucy Raubertas, All Rights Reserved.
Above images courtesy of Alexis Karl. Please credit all reuse or links to this material as appropriate to Lucy Raubertas or Alexis Karl.