Clementine Dalmatie


Class of: 2023

Major: Fine Arts BFA

Medium: A combination of multiple media

Faculty: Sam Bennett

Prompt: Choose an object that represent yourself and try to recreate it from scratch. Then, recreate it with a completely different material.

Every moment I live, person and object I love, I define them through their smell. So, when we were assigned to recreate an object that represented ourselves, I decided to recreate lavender. The only way my brain could represent lavender was through it smell. I wanted to make lavender essential oil by growing my own lavender. After many attempts to find lavender seeds in New York City, I came to the conclusion that I would have to sacrifice the handful of lavender I brought all the way from my grandmother’s house in France, to Brooklyn. With it, I tried many different methods to make lavender essential oil. They all failed, but I was eventually able to distillate lavender in water. Like so, I ended up with a lavender-scented water. I had finally extracted what I think is the essence of lavender.

I was back in France for the second part of the project, because of the pandemic. Back with my grandmother, her lavender smell and all the memories it carries. After desperate thinking on how to recreate lavender with a different material during quarantine, I did a poll to find out what were people’s favourite smell. They all had two things in common. First, people were all very attached to their favourite smell, and secondly, the smell they had chosen were all comforting and belonging to something or someone they loved. After that, I found old photos of my grandmother, her house, and recordings of her. I painted the flow of sensations I experience when I smell lavender. With that, I made a video on lavender, and the things it evokes me.