"DO touch and smell"
curated by Meriem Berrada and Janine Gaëlle Dieudji
MACAAL - Museum of African Contemporary Art Al Maaden | Marrakesh, Morocco
« DO touch and smell » question the physical connections that exists between the viewer and the artwork in an exhibition setting.
The multi-sensorial installation acts as a directly respond of the artist to « Material Insanity ». In this work, Kosmatopoulos offers visitors an opportunity to interact in a more direct and intimate way with the various materials present in the exhibition and reconsider along the way their experience of it.
The artist collaborated with professional perfumers to create an interpretation of the scent of materials found in the exhibition. Inside the installation, the visitor faces a large wall covered with hundreds of sorbaroads whose caps are made of stone, plaster, wool, sugar, iron… and each containing inside the fragrances attached to that same material. Visitors are encouraged to remove the cap and smell the fragrance while holding in their hand that material.
Deprived from the all-too-obvious visual dimension of it, they can now engage into their own personal olfactory and tactile journey into the world of materials to capture their essence.
Breaking the traditional museum rule of the « do not touch » that restricts the experience of the artwork to the simple pleasure of the eyes, « DO touch and smell » encourages us to see but also touch and smell the physical components that make up the works of the exhibition.
By deconstructing these latter into a basic combination of mediums, it allows us to get closer to their plain materiality, the physicality of their essence. Beyond their form, their color composition or their concept, the artist offers a new way to connect the artworks of the exhibition together, by asking the question: « what are they made of ?».
« DO touch and smell » was made possible thanks to the support of Givaudan.
The installation was created during Kosmatopoulos’ residence at Le18 in Marrakesh.