The Smell of Rain

Odorama 37 with Saša Spačal, Frank Bloem, Rosalie Bak, Henk Jonkers and Leanne Wijnsma

20 Feb 2020
Most of us remember how the streets smell after a summer rain. This smell is called petrichor and is partly caused by the organic compound geosmine and bacteria that help organic matter decay. Over time these build up under stone and earth, the rain releases their perfume. The Smell of Rain is an homage to this natural phenomenon. We will look into the microbes that cause the pleasant smell after rain, humans' sensitivity to geosmine and the art installation by Saša Spačal that has captured this distinct scent.

Tickets / Facebook

Spacal's installation emits a petrichor smell - Saša Spačal

Henk Jonkers

Jonkers is a microbiologist. He has done research into the restorative power of microbes. 

Rosalie Bak

Bak is an artist experimenting with humusation. Together with Susanne Duijvestein she started De Humusator, a website dedicated to the research of humusation as a green alternative to burial or cremation. 

Leanne Wijnsma

Wijnsma is an Amsterdam based designer building experiences for the senses using soil and microbes. She also organises workshops and gives lectures on prototyping future senses. She will present her project Soilbread: a research into the practice of eating earth. 

Saša Spačal

Spačal is an artist working at the intersection of living systems research, contemporary and sound art. Her work focuses primarily on the posthuman condition, where human beings exist and act as one of many elements in the ecosystem and not as sovereigns. At Odorama, she will introduce her installation Meta_Bolus. 


Odorama 37: The Smell of Rain
Thursday, the 20th of February
Start 20:00
Mediamatic Biotoop, Dijksgracht 6, Amsterdam

Tickets: Full price €7,50 | Artist / Student / Stadspas €5,25 | +€2,50 at the door | (including €1 administration fee)

*We give a discount to students and artists. If this applies to you we will ask to see your kvk nr/portfolio or student card for this option. For questions please send an email to

This event is in English


Barren land. Rain can release the perfume hiding in the cracks - Found on:


Wijnsma onderzoekt de aarde en de microben die erin leven. Tunnels zitten vol microben -


The Smell of Rain - Frank introduces the theme of this edition of Odorama - The Smell of Rain. 

With: Frank Bloem

The Smell of Rain - Guests experience the scent of synthetic Vanillin, sometimes used as a flavouring agent in foods, beverages, and pharmaceuticals. 


The Smell of Rain - Spačal presents the scope of her work as being in between the macrocosm of planet Earth and the microcosm of bacteria. 


At Odorama there's always something new to smell - In this case, the bottle contains microbes which have restorative powers when combined with concrete, thus generating a self-repairing entity that can close tears of 1mm. The microbes smell yeasty.  Frank Bloem


Rosalie introducing her research on humusation - Humusation allows the body to decompose in the upper layers of soil and return nutrients to it. 

With: Rosalie Bak

The Smell of Rain -


Leanne and Frank trying out the bread made with soil -


Soilbread by Leanne Wijnsma - Soilbread is a project where she researches geophagy (the practice of eating earth) through bread experiments.


The Smell of Rain - Guests experience the scent of synthetic Vanillin, sometimes used as a flavouring agent in foods, beverages, and pharmaceuticals.