Where Dogs Run

Smell of faces
This unique, ever-changing pattern is visualized in a facial composite. This is how it works: when a person approaches the analyzer, sniffing tubes “sniff him, then gas analyzers process the information, which then passes to a computer program that translate air composition data into data concerning the shape and position of facial features (the components of a facial composite). As a result, a person sees a face of their smell that is conditional, in no way related to their actual physical appearance.

Paul Vanouse

Labor
What does labor smell like? Labor is a dynamic, self-regulating art installation that re-creates the scent of people exerting themselves under stressful conditions. There are, however, no people involved in making the smell – it is created by bacteria propagating in the three glass bioreactors. Each bioreactor incubates a unique species of human skin bacteria responsible for the primary scent of sweating bodies: Staphylococcus epidermidis, Corynebacterium xerosis and Propionibacterium avidum. As these bacteria metabolize simple sugars and fats, they create the distinct smells associated with human exertion, stress and anxiety. Their scents combine in the central chamber with which a sweatshop icon, the white t-shirt, is infused as the scents are disseminated. The scent intensifies throughout the exhibition.