Icons of Smell Science

Odorama 15 - with Charles Spence, Ep Köster, Leanne Wijnsma, Tanja Deurloo, Calliope Tsoupaki, Garmt Dijksterhuis and Caro Verbeek

19 apr 2017

Seeing is believing is empiricism’s credo. But what if we told you that what we see is guided by what we smell? Our experience of the world is heavily formed by the interactive play between our senses. So if you want to manipulate people’s awareness, you should bomb them with aromas! For this Odorama we invited renowned icons of olfactory science prof. dr. Ep Köster and prof. dr. Charles Spence and designer of smelly instinct triggers Leanne Wijnsma, who will explain all about the impact of scents on our consciousness. At the end of this evening Tanja Deurloo and Calliope Tsoupaki will present the trailer of their piece Narcissus together with a smell performance.

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Caro and Garmt introducing the 15th Odorama - Anisa Xhomaqi

This Odorama is a collaboration between NOSE and Mediamatic. The program is curated and will be co-hosted by Garmt Dijksterhuis and Caro Verbeek.


Professor dr. Charles Spence

How does our sense of hearing influence our sense of smell? And does smelling alter what we see? Our senses never operate in an isolated way. They constantly influence each other. Charles Spence is a renowned professor and expert in the field of multi-modal perception. His research focuses on how a better understanding of the human mind will lead to the better design of multisensory foods, products, interfaces, and environments in the future. His research calls for a radical new way of examining and understanding the senses that has major implications for the way in which we design everything from household products to mobile phones, and from the food we eat to the places in which we work and live.


Prof dr Charles Spence at Odorama - Prof dr Charles Spence - experimental psychologist speaks about olfactory research in the context of multi-modal studies.

Professor dr. Ep Köster

Professor E.P. Köster is a titan in the field of olfactory science and one of the first psychologists to research the sense of smell. Ep Kösters - in his eighties - performed some of the most important insights in the way smell influences our behavior. He was also the brain behind the scent that was added to natural gas to warn us for danger. For Odorama he will share an overview of the history of olfactory science in the Netherlands, from the first olfactometer to current research on the role of odours in interpersonal behaviours and the detection of submission, fear and aggressiveness.


Prof dr Ep Köster at Odorama - Prof dr Ep Köster - professor in Psychology presents an overview of the history of olfactory science in the Netherlands.


Leanne Wijnsma

Leanne Wijnsma's work uses design as a tool for research and experience in an urgency to reflect on the human condition. She investigates the relationship between freedom and technology through smell design, subterranean explorations and digging tunnels. Wijnsma is interested in addressing the instinctual within us by creating experiences for our senses, trusting that instinct evokes an inherent truth. One of her projects, The Smell of Data, is a new scent created to instinctively alert internet users of data leaks on personal devices.


Leanne presents The Smell of Data. -


Smell of Data - by Leanne Wijnsma The Smell of Data,  is a new scent created to instinctively alert internet users of data leaks on personal devices Leanne Wijnsma

Calliope Tsoupaki & Tanja Deurloo

Narcissus is a melodrama by Greek-Dutch composer Calliope Tsoupaki for scent and 6 musicians (piano, violin, cello, bass clarinet, horn and harp) which she developed together with Tanja Deurloo. A true gesamtkunstwerk involving both music composition, set design and a scent composition. Music an scent are known to deepen the total sensorial experience, which is enhanced by performing narcissus in its purest form; without text, libretto or song. It is the first time ever that scent en sound have been composed to interact with each other in one piece, influencing each other during the creative process and the concert.


Narcissus performace -

At Odorama they will provide us with a snippet of the original sounds and smells.

About NOSE

Since it is our most complicated and least researched sense, olfaction deserves an interdisciplinary approach, to truly understand how our sense of smell works. Therefore, on this night we will also celebrate the inauguration of NOSE (Netherlands Olfactory Science Exchange) to exchange ideas and knowledge between the arts and the sciences devoted to the study of olfaction.


NOSE Network launch at Odorama -

Financially supported by NWO grant 

Information and Tickets
Odorama: The Olfactory Science Edition
Wednesday 19 April
Program start at 20:00
Mediamatic Biotoop, Dijksgracht 6, Amsterdam

Tickets: €7,50 pre-sale, €10 door

Students pay only €5!