Installation artist Sung-hwan Ahn uses the sense of smell to pose a question on human existence. He notes that smell lies in the realm of emotion rather than reason, and, as such, brings forth impulsive and psychological responses. In this project, smell functions as a crucial component in the human’s self-awareness of its conditions of existence.
Ahn collects unique smells of individuals through enfleurage, a traditional fragrance-extraction method, and processes it into essential oil as a form of perfume. The fragrance reaches the audience through an olfactory pathway, and the viewers react to different experiences, tendencies and emotions. Reaching beyond the effects of a simple recording, the performance video on the fragrance production process stimulates a strange sensation in the viewers through the foreign action of scraping the human body with tools to cause friction and collect their scents.
my scent leads the viewer to find their identity as a human being through the cognition connection between olfactory senses and long-term memory. It reaffirms the unique sense of self within the individual and, at the same time, leads them to imagine otherwise. This affirmation and discovery reexamine the ever-redefined human existence and condition, as well as the possibility of individual representations.