Ben Gorham, Byredo Parfums

Photographs courtesy of Byredo Parfums

A fragrance house in Stockholm has committed itself to the emotional aspect of scent by creating products that are reminiscent of lost memories, classic personalities and impressionable moments. Byredo’s style of perfumery is a combination of the Scandinavian aesthetics and ethnic influences of its creator, Ben Gorham.

While most people employ methods of photography or journals to record precious moments in time, Ben does the same through scent. His vision fills each bottle of inception with a soul, completed by the limited use of raw materials. This ensures that every ingredient has a reason for being, as they are being considered to the fullest potential. They are then hand assembled in Sweden and delivered within a simple and elaborate packaging.

byredo perfume ben gorham

Hi Ben, it is a pleasure to be conversing with you. How are you?

Well travelled at this point. Most places inspire me one way or another, from the most extreme, like India to Norway, they all have a very distinctive charm. The thing about these places that has become very important to me is culture, something I feel is very relevant.

I agree. What was growing up like for you, and what did you enjoy most about your heritage?

I come from a very simple home, and was brought up by my mother alongside my little sister. I am of Indian and Canadian origin and lived in Sweden.

That is a whole lot of festivals to celebrate.

My mother always thought it was important that we learnt about Swedish celebrations and cultures. I enjoy the great diversity of food and people and was not exposed to a very American lifestyle or Indian way of celebrating festivals. Growing up in various cultures has helped me relate to other cultures. I also studied Fine Arts at the Stockholm Art School.

byredo perfume ben gorham

How do your studies relate to your work today?

It was relevant in the fact that they were multidisciplinary. I was able to learn and experiment with different mediums. I was completely clueless upon graduation, and had no real plan. I knew I was looking for a form of expression and by chance I found it in fragrance. Fragrance is just another medium for me.

Read more in N˚3: Fight.