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6 Arab Artists Reimagine This Season’s Freshest Scents


ARCADIA Unity by Amna Al Habtoor

Arcadia, Unity by Amna Al Habtoor, reimaged by Shahad Nazer.

Unity by Amna Al Habtoor.
Notes: Apple, olibanum, rose, violet, orris, sandalwood.

Shahad Nazer

Shahad Nazer

Shahad Nazer. Photo: Supplied

Growing up with artist parents meant Shahad Nazer always had a passion for it. A Saudi national based in Jeddah, her inspiration comes from, “My dreams, my surroundings, and the societal issues we face here as Arabs and women,” she muses. For this piece, she was inspired by the elements of the perfume. “It gave me this earthy, nature-like feeling,” she says. Wanting to showcase the note of sandalwood motivated the swing.


TFK Seventh Sense

TFK, Seventh Sense, reimagined by Ibticem Larbi

Seventh Sense.
Notes: Grapefruit, citrus, jasmine, lily, musk, patchouli, oakmoss.

Ibticem Larbi

Ibticem Larbi

Ibticem Larbi. Photo: Supplied

Ibticem Larbi is inspired by her Moroccan, Tunisian, and French heritage. “I wanted to focus on the refreshing sides of summer, its tenderness, and the spiritual aspect of this fragrance that relates to its name, Seventh Sense,” she says. Staging two young women in the foreground, she explains, “As a woman, spirituality and feelings are a big part of my general work.” The scenery is based on memories of Larbi’s summers spent in Tunisia and Morocco.

Frederic Malle

FREDERIC MALLE 20th anniversary edition Portrait of a Lady

Frederic Malle, 20th-anniversary edition Portrait of a Lady, reimagined by Farahzada El Shihy

20th anniversary edition Portrait of a Lady.
Notes: Turkish rose, raspberry, clove, patchouli, sandalwood, white musk.

Farahzada El Shihy

Farahzada El Shihy

Farahzada El Shihy. Photo: Supplied

“I believe scent taps directly into your emotions and memories and creates indescribable feelings,” says Farahzada El Shihy from Egypt. Working with Frederic Malle’s 20thanniversary edition of its iconic Portrait of a Lady, El Shihy explains, “I decided to create a fusion of monochromatic tribal patterns, adding the dominant notes of the perfume in red. Finally, I created my kind of lady holding the perfume bottle in a divine way.”

The House of Oud


The House of Oud, Keep Glazed, reimagined by Alymamah Rashed

Keep Glazed.
Notes: Mango, coconut, ginger, lemon, musk.

Alymamah Rashed

Alymamah Rashed

Alymamah Rashed. Photo: Supplied

“I am inspired by abandoned ornaments, the hybridity of westernization and easternization within architecture, 9th to 12th century Arab philosophers, Sufi poetry, and the story of my tangible and intangible body as an Arab Muslim woman,” says Alymamah Rashed. Hailing from Kuwait, she wanted to create a piece that would highlight the signature bottle design of The House of Oud and replicate the tropical and fruity notes like mango, coconut, and ginger.


GUCCI The Alchemist’s Garden A Chant for the Nymph

Gucci, The Alchemist’s Garden A Chant for the Nymph, reimagined by Nourie Flayhan

The Alchemist’s Garden A Chant for the Nymph. 
Notes: Frangipani, ylang-ylang, tiare flower, vanilla

Nourie Flayhan

Nourie Flayhan

Nourie Flayhan. Photo: Supplied

How does Lebanese artist Nourie Flayhan describe her style? “Bold, curious, whimsical, sensitive, and emotional,” she says. For Gucci’s A Chant for the Nymph from its The Alchemist’s Garden haute perfumery line, she showcased this, inspired by the story behind the scent. “I felt as though I had stepped through a door into to a mystical world of nymphs dancing together under a full moon, with frangipanis glistening with the aroma of their little bodies hovering in the air. It all just came to life as I put my pen to the iPad.”

Also Read: Gucci’ First Universal Scent is Inspired by the Power of Memories

Acqua Di Parma

ACQUA DI PARMA Colonia Futura

Acqua Di Parma, Colonia Futura, reimagined by Sumayyah Al Suwaidi

Colonia Futura.
Notes: Bergamot, lemon, grapefruit, pink peppercorn, lavender, sage, vetiver.

Sumayyah Al Suwaidi

Sumayyah Al Suwaidi

Sumayyah Al Suwaidi. Photo: Supplied

“My life inspires me as I see my artworks as my daily diary where I exhale all the things I inhale during my day,” says Emirati artist Sumayyah Al Suwaidi. “This collection is so special because it stands for nature and preserving lives for generations to come. I am a mother and I want my children to be part of a beautiful and healthy world. In my artwork, I bring together all these issues as a single image that hopefully resonates with all who sees it.”

Read Next: Why This Dubai-Based Organic Beauty Label is Going From Strength to Strength

Originally published in the October 2020 issue of Vogue Arabia

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