Stofan | Caring for Our Senses in The Scent Library

Juan Camilo works with smells and textures inThe Scent Library to open the doors to our perceptions and care for our senses. The Scent Library is a part of the project  Stofan | Public Living Room.  It is an experimental project where the library works with different partners on  placemaking at the library. We asked Juan Camilo a few questions on this new place he creates in Grófin and how he will lead the workshops in the Scent Library on the 12th and 29th of February

What is included in The Scent Library? 
The Scent Library is a place where you are  guided through the nooks and crannies of the mind. During the workshops I invite you to an exploration of the elements where we increase the senses with different smells, texture and movements. The aim of The Scent Library is to offer the opportunity for a restoration of our relationship with our senses – how we perceive each other, the world, and the elements we play with and use. The underline is unlearning and using our senses to renovate of our relationships.  

How will we be exploring within The Scent Library? 
There are boxes placed in the comic section on the 5th floor at the library. In the boxes are different things to sense and instructions you can follow. If you are a couple, then one person takes the lead and the other person is exploring with their senses. It begins with closing your eyes. One person is sensing with closed eyes and is introduced to the content of the box. You receive different smells, can sense diverse textures, and hold objects that might also create sounds. The object can be placed on one’s head, close to the nose or in the hand. This can be playful, but you need the consent of the other person before you begin. 

Lyktarsafnið Lyktarsafnið

Tell us about your guided workshops? 
We begin a sensibilization with movement, sound, and relaxation before we begin with the exploration of the elements and sharing with each other. It takes two hours in total. We share and create new lines and debrief in the end. I have many different scents that we will use. With this experience, we use other senses than our sight. Once all the elements are explored, the person takes off the blinds and tells the other person what they thought of during this exploration. This creates a break to the mind, and you can play with different elements. I would like the outcome of the exploration to be a line, a single sentence that then becomes a part of a collective story of single sentences. 

For my workshop I would like to move within the building of Grófarhús during the workshop and bring the exploration of The Scent Library into the exhibition room of the Reykjavík Museum of Photography on the 6th floor. Stuart Richardson´s exhibition “Undercurrent“ depicts unique poetic textures that share calm elements of nature. which we can connect with. This is a surrounding we need to have a chance to reflect and restore how we sense each other and the world around us. 

The theme of Stofan this year is Share the Care. In your opinion, what or who needs caring in our community? 
What we need to care for is our senses “sensibility and sensitivity” – open the doors to our perceptions. This is what I want to renovate. A book I would recommend for the library that deals with the same explorations and questions as The Scent Library is “Staying with the trouble : making kin in the Chthulucene” by Donna Haraway. 

Donna Haraway - Staying with the Trouble

Further information on the project Stofan | A Public Living Room 
Dögg Sigmarsdóttir 
Project Manger|Civic Participation 

UpdatedWednesday February 14th 2024, 10:38