Aromas and Flavors


June 5 to October 21, 2018

Tuesday to Saturday

10 am to 10 pm

Sundays and public holidays

10 am to 6 pm





Aromas and Flavors, the next exhibit to occupy JAPAN HOUSE São Paulo, brings a playful, interactive, and quite didactic environment, proposing a walk through the diversity of smells and tastes in an immersion in Japanese culture through the senses. The exhibit’s format allows visitors to learn, through practical experiences and conceptual, scientific, or artistic elucidations, to answer questions such as: What are the basic flavors (sweet, bitter, sour, salty, and umami) and how does the human body identify them? Where does the taste of food come from? Or how does smell contribute to building flavor? And what about perfume, deodorant, bar soap? How are these smells formed and how were they obtained?

All of these issues are unveiled throughout the exhibit, which is divided into 3 stages: Identification, Construction, and Sensory. To help tell this story, the exhibit features the installation Olfactory Labyrinth version 4 - Discovering cherry blossoms, by Japanese artist Maki Ueda. The work induces the visitor to follow a certain path, guided by the smell and, thus, find the aroma of the sakuras, trees with cherry blossoms.

To illustrate this, Maki Ueda will give a free lecture on Olfactory Art, in which she will present her professional trajectory and the understanding of her work through fragrances. “In my artistic practice, I use smell as a means to incorporate the sense of smell in art. Generally speaking, when it comes to smell, we often think about its practical applications: Perfumery, personal hygiene, flavorings, etc. Conversely, I focus on the parts that are related to memories, emotions, perceptions, and experiences. The smell I present is like a painting,” says Maki.

Conducted by JAPAN HOUSE São Paulo and curated by Felipe Ribenboim, Aromas and Flavors will work to build typical Japanese tastes and smells with typical fragrances and essences, such as seaweed, wasabi and others that are present in food, drinks, perfumes, scents, and incense sticks. “If, on the one hand, the exhibit will address the detection and construction of flavors and smells, its cultural significance will also be present. Aromas and flavors are signified and valued in different ways by different cultures,” says Ribenboim.

The immersion in Japanese palates will be complemented with a blind tasting of jellied candies of Japanese grape, melon, wasabi, soy sauce, and strawberry, flavors developed exclusively by Takasago, an aroma and fragrance shop. About this exhibition, JAPAN HOUSE São Paulo Cultural Director Natasha Barzaghi Geenen, says: “It is extremely important to present the different facets of Japanese culture in an attempt to unravel it. Valuing all senses, we show the Japanese universe and a complete immersion based on elements that have not yet been part of our program. At this moment, we bring Japan to be appreciated and understood from another perspective.”

Aromas and Flavors is an exhibit organized by JAPAN HOUSE São Paulo and Base7 Cultural Projects, with resources earmarked by the Federal Act of Cultural Incentive and Proac. Bombril, Ana Airlines/United Airlines, Takasago, Bradesco Seguros, and Ajinomoto are the sponsors.

Aromas e Sabores


Aromas and Flavors Exhibit
June 5 to October 21, 2018
2nd floor

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Facebook: facebook.com/JapanHouseSP
Instagram: @japanhousesp

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