Jo Burzynska – The Institute for Art and Olfaction

Jo Burzynska presents ‘La Chevelure’
In residence at the IAO
Dates: August 15 – 26, 2016

Join us to experience La Chevelure, an immersive sound/scent installation by Jo Burzynska inspired by the poetic imagery of the symbolist poets, and – more specifically – a poem by Charles Baudelaire.

Opening Event: 
Thursday August 25
IAO Project Space
The Institute for Art and Olfaction
> Directions and parking

La Chevelure is also on view Friday August 26th, from 10am-4pm at IAO


La Chevelure
by Charles Baudelaire

O fleecy hair, falling in curls to the shoulders!
O black locks! O perfume laden with nonchalance!
Ecstasy! To people the dark alcove tonight
With memories sleeping in that thick head of hair.
I would like to shake it in the air like a scarf!

Sweltering Africa and languorous Asia,
A whole far-away world, absent, almost defunct,
Dwells in your depths, aromatic forest!
While other spirits glide on the wings of music,
Mine, O my love! floats upon your perfume.

I shall go there, where trees and men, full of vigor,
Are plunged in a deep swoon by the heat of the land;
Heady tresses be the billows that carry me away!
Ebony sea, you hold a dazzling dream
Of rigging, of rowers, of pennons and of masts:

A clamorous harbor where my spirit can drink
In great draughts the perfume, the sound and the color;
Where the vessels gliding through the gold and the moire
Open wide their vast arms to embrace the glory
Of a clear sky shimmering with everlasting heat.

I shall bury my head enamored with rapture
In this black sea where the other is imprisoned;
And my subtle spirit caressed by the rolling
Will find you once again, O fruitful indolence,
Endless lulling of sweet-scented leisure!

Blue-black hair, pavilion hung with shadows,
You give back to me the blue of the vast round sky;
In the downy edges of your curling tresses
I ardently get drunk with the mingled odors
Of oil of coconut, of musk and tar.

A long time! Forever! my hand in your thick mane
Will scatter sapphires, rubies and pearls,
So that you will never be deaf to my desire!
Aren’t you the oasis of which I dream, the gourd
From which I drink deeply, the wine of memory?

Translation by William Aggeler, The Flowers of Evil (Fresno, CA: Academy Library Guild, 1954)


During her two week residency at the IAO, Jo Burzynska will research and create the scent component to her site-specific sound/scent piece ‘La Chevelure’. As the culmination of the residency, she will present a sonic and olfactory installation. This will use the poetic imagery of the symbolist poets as inspiration for a multisensory work, which like that of the poets, will draw on the interactions between sound and scents to evoke states of mind.

However, in this work, this state will be created not by words but by the sounds and scents themselves – in an immersive sensory environment that sets out to blur the boundaries between its own artifice and the subconscious reactions provoked by the participant’s perceptible responses.

The residency will be devoted to exploring the scent materials at the IAO, and the creation and integration of the olfactory elements to the work.

> Read Jo’s blog about her residency



Jo_B_2Jo Burzynska – who also records and performs under the name Stanier Black-Five – is a New Zealand-based sound artist and wine writer whose work in these areas has increasingly converged in the production of multisensory art. An international wine critic and judge, she writes one of New Zealand’s most widely read columns in the New Zealand Herald, while as a sound/multisensory artist she has exhibited, performed and released her work throughout the world.

Her installations and performances are regularly created at the intersection of the senses, often combining sound and taste and. This includes the sound and wine installation, “Oenosthesia” created from a Suoni dal confine artist residency in Irpina, Italy, which was premiered at the Intereferenze FARM Festival in Tufo, Italy (2012) and went to form part of a group show at Italy’s national museum of contemporary art, MAXXI in Rome (2015).

Her recent solo exhibition, “Mishearings”, was a series of multisensory installations that drew both on her own studies of sound and taste and the current psychological research into crossmodal correspondences that have shown that the senses can have a powerful influence over each other. In this, the sensorial and conceptual elements of the works were achieved by the interaction of sound with different sensory stimuli, which when combined, altered or intensified the audience’s perceptions.

Burzynska’s live performances include major festivals, such as the London Musicians Collective’s annual Festival of Experimental Music in the UK to New Zealand’s Lines of Flight Festival. Recent album releases include Body Waves and Avast! on Belgium’s respected experimental music label, Entr’acte.

She is one of the founders of The Auricle Sonic Arts Gallery, which includes the world’s first dedicated wine and sound bar. Here she curates The Auricle’s “oenosthetic” wine list, in which she matches wines to the current exhibition and the music playing in the space.

More information about Jo Burzynska’s sound art can be found at and wine writing at