Mark is a legend of niche perfumery with more than 25 years of experience and well known for his creations for Comme des Garçons, Le:Labo, L’Air de Panache for Wes Anderson’s The Grand Budapest Hotel movie and many others.
O:Where does your inspiration come from?
M:Inspiration, you can find anywhere, travelling, countryside, strolling through Paris, hanging out on my terrace observing people. Films, music, books, there are so many sources for inspiration…
O:Do you get inspired by visual sensations?
M:Yes sure, paintings, publicities, mood boards, landscapes, towns etc.
O:Are you inspired by any other creators and artists in the world?
M:Yes, several actually, Miró, Monnet, Drake, Bowie,
P. Conte; I would love to make a fragrance for a
Tarantino film, Gucci, L. Vuitton.
O:How do you pin down / remember your ideas?
M:If I get inspired by something, I usually scribble down a short accord, that I don’t forget, and when I have time or for a specific project, I get it out and make a fragrance out of it.
O: What sense complements olfactory experience the most?
M:Taste, when you smell you feel the taste.
O:What is the beauty of your job?
M:Creating new fragrances every day, experimenting, meeting new clients, brands.
O:What are your three main pieces of wisdom when it comes to fragrance?
M:Freedom, creativity, a good challenge.
O:What people can expect from your perfumes?
M:Tailor made, to the highest expectations.
O:What makes fine ingredients?
M:The use of high quality natural products, rare naturals or chemicals (which are very exspensive).
O:How do you know your fragrance is completed?
M:Feeling & experience& of course the dialogue with our clients.
O:Do you believe that perfumes can inspire people?
M:Perfumes can do a lot of things, inspire, make you feel good/free/special/unique. Give you energy, bring back memories, make you fall in love, the list is long.
O:Many people share stories of how some perfumes awaken their emotions, do you have any story like that? Your recent most vibrant memory about the smell.
M:Well yes, I have a client in Austria , with a brand called «Wiener Blut», i made a fragrace for him some years ago, called «Klubwasser». Which I had totally forgotten. I smelt the fragrance some weeks ago, for a certain reason, and I must say, memories came back to me, his brief, the descriptions he gave me, what he was looking for and I must say, the fragrance is unique and wonderful, I’ve been wearing it since.
O:What excites you the most?
M:I’m an easy going person, everything I do, with family, friends, excites me. I think I have found the perfect balance between my hobby (some people call it job) and the rest of time I spend.
O:Are you hedonist? How does it affect your work?
M:I try to be a hedonist in my hobby, it’s very challenging and sometimes very frustrating , but I hate looking back, hate repeating myself, so I have no choice , but it works rather well… hi hi- :)
O:How do you wear perfume if at all?
M:I created a fragrance in my black series , which is a Vetiver theme, called Emotional Drop, I put it on every morning. It makes me smile, gives me energy, and hundreds of people have told me, that I smell wonderful. By the way Vetiver from Haiti, is my all time favorite ingredient.
O:What is your favourite time spent alone with yourself?
M:Normandy in my country house, either just glancing in the open chimney fire or glancing over the valley, watching the cows under the apple trees, playing in the meadows.
O:Do you have any daily creative practices to keep you on?
M:I still do a lot of mixing myself in the lab, which means every product I use in the formula I smell it, keeps the nose sharp.
O:In your other interviews you have mentioned the preciousness of freedom and your happiness of running an independent company that chooses the brands it creates for. What’s your criteria to join a project?
M:I would say that the main criteria to work on a project, especially if it’s a new client, is the feeling, emotion the client gives us. The brief its self, is it new, interesting enough, there is always a fit or dialogue which hast to pass, perhaps in one sentence, “the feeling & emotion, between the two parties hast to fit”.