Fragrance

By Amy Sciaretto

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NYC culture dictator/artist, the eccentrically enigmatic Andy Warhol once commented that a fragrance company had inquired about ‘buying’ his aura. “We didn’t think it was possible to package all that the gender-bending Pop Artistry, Warhol represented in scent form”, he said.

But NYC perfumer Bond No.9, which creates scents inspired by and as homages to NYC neighborhoods and icons, among them Chinatown, Coney Island, Wall Street and Bryant Park, has attempted to ‘bottle’ Warhol’s essence with Andy Warhol Silver Factory. Silver Factory is named after Warhol’s famed studio which started the fun, spirited “Youthquake” movement of the late 70′s and early 80′s; where anyone who was new, cool and cutting edge was part of the scene, including socialite Edie Sedgwick and French artist/author Ultraviolet.

Both Warhol and Bond No. 9 are NYC icons bent on capturing the vitality of the city and its characters in different forms. Warhol, a regular on the Studio 54 circuit, wasn’t afraid to explore the seedier underbelly of the city or himself. His studio was a drug emporium. He made no bones about loving the plastic glamour of Hollywood, gay underground culture, and of being a voyeur. It’s suggested that his quirky nature got him dismissed from high-brow art circles, and in turn, he created “Pop Art” style.

With Silver Factory, Warhol’s creative essence takes liquid form, and is more effectively represented here than it was earlier this year in that Sedgwick biopic mess, Factory Girl. While Warhol’s career was about spotlighting persons, places, and things, this scent encapsulates all that is Andy.

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Like Warhol, Silver Factory is androgynous. It’s a smoky, spicy and syrupy unisex scent that clings. With heavy notes of incense (hugely popular in the 1970s), wood resin, and husky amber mixing with floral notes of jasmine, iris, and violet for a molten effect; both men and women “take up more space” by wearing Silver Factory, as Warhol was a firm believer that another way to fill a room was by wearing perfume.

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Warhol was an American artist; famous for his flamboyant lifestyle as well as for his iconic Che Guevara, Marilyn Monroe and Campbell Soup Can homages. Warhol transformed the popular and mundane into bold artistic statements; it’s no surprise that the bottle Silver Factory is transformed by its textured silver, turquoise and amethyst graphics. The flacon was inspired by the soup can; the perfume is actually concentrated, and condensed, like soup, so it actually falls somewhere between eau de parfum and perfume extract. It’s indefinable. Kinda like Warhol himself.

Andy Warhol Silver Factory is available at www.bondno9.com, and Selected Saks Fifth Avenue Stores.

Originally published December 2007
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