This garden is a visual interpretation of the German bestseller Perfume: The Story of a Murderer (1985) by Patrick Süskind.
The main character, Jean-Baptiste Grenouille, has an exceptional sense of smell but no body odour himself. He embarks on a murderous quest in order to create the ultimate perfume which would destroy all forms of hatred, including his own contempt for humanity.
The plants in the garden are a sample of most of the flowers, trees and natural materials described in the novel. A path unfurls through the garden like a scented ribbon. It leads to the ultimate perfume: a drop in the hollow of a leaf placed up high, out of reach, evoking the strength of desires.
The space is divided into seven sections, each representing a fragrance family. The extraction of plant oils is embodied by three glass sculptures. They are made up of blue vials, transparent bottles and opaque colourful phials.
The plants in this garden are all used by perfumers, some are even found in descriptions of paradise.
Caroline THOMAS, artist, designer, gardener
Caroline Thomas is owner and founder of Tuinen van Thomas, a design practice for gardens and landscape. She received a bachelor’s degree in Fine Art, at the HKU University of the Arts Utrecht. A few years later, she was trained as a professional gardener at TerraNext in Eelde. Since 2007, Caroline Thomas creates private gardens and planting designs, in which she aims to relate the character of her clients to the historical context of their garden. In 2017, she was selected to design and build a small festival garden in the Gardens of Appeltern, The Netherlands.