Iconic fashion photographer Nick Knight has created a conceptual film for the Comme des Garçons’ 2015 fragrance Floriental, released to SHOWstudio, his video website, this week. Based on the concept of a flower that has no scent, the film and perfume both play with the idea of working out what else ‘floral’ could mean in a fragrance.
Knight, who has previously collaborated with designers such as John Galliano and Alexander McQueen, has this time partnered with Comme Des Garçons to create a deliciously arresting conceptual work.
Flowers have been a key interest of Knight’s; last year he published a photography book of plants from the Natural History Museum in London’s herbarium. Appealing to visuality rather than the sense of smell may be an odd choice to advertise a fragrance, but it works excellently in examining the use of the neutral-smelling cistus flower for the perfume.
The video stinks wonderfully of synesthesia, where flowers are shown in terms of dripping colour in order to describe this outlier in the floral family. Texture and colour are at the forefront in Knights work here. Fowers appear to melt into their component colours and fill large bell jars where the scent is captured.
'I was interested in evoking the relationship between painting and flowers,' explained Knight. 'In this film for Comme des Garçons I wanted to suggest that the flowers were transforming themselves into a painting: painting themselves.'