In support of the San Diego Art Institute (SDAI) current exhibition Sweet Gongs Vibrating organized by curator-in-residence Amanda Cachia, SDAI presents ODOPHONICS: An olfacto-sound performance by Brian Goeltzenleuchter and Sean Francis Conway, featuring Art of Élan. This performance for scent and chamber ensemble challenges current perceptions of how we experience smell and sound. The performance takes place at SDAI on Saturday, May 14th at 4pm.

Septimus Piesse, a 19th century French perfumer, introduced a vocabulary about smells, making use of musical metaphors such as "notes" (individual smells) and "chords" (combinations of notes) that are still used today in fragrance industries. In 1867 Piesse created an "Odophone," a literal scale of smells corresponding to different pitches in Western musical notation. By his own logic, scent chords could be formed.

Using steam vapor and an industrial fan, Goeltzenleuchter introduces essences from Piesse's odophone in time with an arrangement for chamber ensemble composed by Conway and performed by Art of Élan. The notes played by the musicians will correspond directly to the smells outlined in Piesse’s "Odophone."

Admission is $5 general, $3 students, seniors, and military personnel. SDAI members and children under 12 admitted free.

*An ASL interpreter will be present.
San Diego Art Institute, 1439 El Prado, San Diego, California 92101

Related Event:

Sweet Gongs Vibrating

Tuesday - Saturday: 10:00am - 5:00pm
Sunday: 12:00pm - 5:00pm
Closed Mondays and Major Holidays

Related Links:

Brian Goeltzenleuchter is an UC San Diego Department of Visual Arts MFA Alum. For more about his work, please visit:

Amanda Cachia is an UC San Diego Department of Visual Arts PhD Art History Candidate. For more about her work, please visit:

Photo detail is courtesy of Artist Brian Goeltzenleuchter and the San Diego Art Institute.

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