Madeleine : A Camera that can Capture your Favorite Smells (scentography)

Do you want to arrest your favorite smell and keep it with your self? What if you could recapture the aroma of that freshly baked birthday cake, or the scent of that shampoo your girlfriend used to use.

A new camera has been developed that can capture the aroma of your favorite food or the smell of the seaside holiday.

Designer Amy Radcliffe’s MA project at Central Saint Martins  brings a more meaningful sensory dimension to storing our favourite memories.

The Madeleine , named after Marcel Proust’s story of involuntary memory prompted by biting into a cake , is Radcliffe’s design for a new kind of camera that records not images, but smells.

Radcliffe's project, developed in the college’s Textile Futures department, draws on “headspace capture” techniques pioneered in the 1970s by Swiss fragrance chemist Roman Kaiser, for obtaining the composition of rare botanical scents for the perfume industry.

With its faceted ceramic casing, glass funnel and plastic tubes, it also looks like a mysterious piece of scientific apparatus.

How it Works

Place the funnel over the object or environment you wish to capture. 
A pump sucks the air across an odour trap made of Tenax – a porous polymer resin which adsorbs the volatile particles that make up the smell.
It can take anything from a few minutes to capture the scent of fresh strawberries, to around 24 hours to store the more subtle aroma of an atmosphere.
The Madeleine records the molecular information of a smell.


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