The Art and Olfaction Awards were founded as a program of the Institute for Art and Olfaction in 2013, on a suggestion from perfumer Bruno Fazzolari. Our first awards ceremony took place in April, 2014 at Goethe Institut Los Angeles, with the support of Luckyscent / Scent Bar.

In 2015, we expanded upon our two award categories by adding The Sadakichi Award for Experimental Work with Scent, created to highlight scent-related work being done in the context of other creative practices. This experimental award joined our artisan and independent awards to create a broad snapshot of the diversity, excellence and potential in the field. 2015 also marked the beginning of our partnership with Esxence Milan. As part of our collaboration with Esxence, we announce the finalists in a special yearly event at the conference.

We held the third annual Art and Olfaction Awards at Hammer Museum as part of their public programming in May 2016. The expanded event was hosted by Zackary Drucker, and was free, open to the public, and packed with 250+ attendees. The event was also supported by a three day scent fair, produced by Hammer Museum, The Institute for Art and Olfaction and Luckyscent / Scent Bar.

In 2017, in an effort to better reach the international community that we serve, we decided to host the fourth annual Art and Olfaction Awards in Europe. We announced the finalists at Esxence in Milan (March 2017), and held the award ceremony itself in Berlin (May 2017). There, we introduced a new award: The Contribution to Scent Culture Award.

In 2018, we hosted our fifth annual awards event at The Tabernacle in London, after announcing the finalists at Esxence on April 5th. At the fifth annual awards, we presented the first Aftel Award for Handmade Perfume, an award designed to celebrate the work being done by small perfume brands whose owner / perfumer has a hand in every step of the perfume creation process.

We hosted the 6th annual awards in Amsterdam, in May 2019. In 2020, we moved our awards to an online format when Covid rendered in-person events impossible, and our 7th awards took place on Zoom, which was more fun than we thought it would be thanks to a dance-off and the music composed by Eau (Maxwell Williams). Our 8th awards took place in July 2022 in Miami, at the World Perfumery Congress.

For the the 9th edition of the Art and Olfaction Awards, we returned to Los Angeles. We were so thrilled to be home, we decided to program ten days of events around the world - the first edition of Scent Week (postponed from 2020). The awards were held on May 11, at the historic Art Deco Cicada Club, in downtown LA.



Artisan Category (Launched 2014)
For brands that are owned or co-owned by the perfumer, who initiated and created the submission's formula in-house, released under the brand's name.
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Independent Category (Launched 2014)
For brands that employed an external perfumer or fragrance house to create the submission's formula, which was then released under the brand's name.
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Sadakichi Award for Experimental Work with Scent (Launched 2015)
For creative or experimental practitioners who make unconventional use of scent, that takes it out of the domain of traditional perfumery.
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Contribution to Scent Culture Award (Launched 2017)
This award is given on an annual basis to an outstanding person who makes significant contributions to public awareness of artisan, independent and experimental practices with scent, on an international scale.
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Aftel Award for Handmade Perfume (Launched 2018)
This award will be given on an annual basis to one outstanding small batch perfume that was 100% perfumer-created, in-house, with no use of outsourced compounding or expansion at any stage of the process.
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Septimus Piesse Visionary Award (launched 2019)
Inaugurated in 2019, this award is given on an as-needed basis to an outstanding person showing proof of exceptional vision with regards to how scent is used, developed, or imagined.



The Art and Olfaction Awards are designed to celebrate the work done by artisan perfumers, independent perfume houses, and creative practitioners working with scent in the context of arts or experimental practices. Our goal is to be a fair and impartial mechanism for recognizing excellence. We aim to accomplish by implementing and improving upon existing awards structures. These include:

    •    Blind, multiple-phase judging
    •    Clear and public judging parameters
    •    Affordable submission fees
    •    Public announcement of the finalists and winners
    •    A panel of judges that reflects a diversity of fields, interests and backgrounds

The Art and Olfaction Awards is made possible by our ongoing partnerships.

The awards are a program of The Institute for Art and Olfaction, a 501(c) 3 non-profit arts organization based in Los Angeles, CA. devoted to access, education and experimentation in the field of scent.