42°N, 74°W, 2016

hydrosol collection

Byrdcliffe Colony, Woodstock, NY

Part of an ongoing practice that investigates specific places through the scents and smells of its natural essence, 42°N, 74°W is a collection of hydrosols made local plants such as wild foraged mint, sugar maple leaf, multi-flora rose, clay from under fallen maple tree, white pine, dirt from under white pine tree, hemlock and, red raspberry leaf.  

These plant and soil aromatic waters became a library of the essence of Byrdcliffe. Each leaf, petal, pine brach, clay dug that was used for a hydrosol was also mapped. A GPS log of coordinates was documented during the foraging process.

During a special event, Byrdcliffe artists and the surrounding community were invited to have a sensory experience inside a lab-like installation nestled in the woods. Hydrosols were presented in spray bottles that could be sprayed to smell. At a tasting station, guests were invited to sip a hydrosol paired with a strawberry cashew cream delight spayed with the mint hydrosol. Plants used  through the process were arranged in the space. The audience was encouraged to slow down and have a direct experience of 42°N,74°W in a transformed state.


During a Hyrdosol Haiku performance, guest were paired to face each other. Each pair was handed a different unmarked hydrosol and asked to spray the space between them. Verbal responses to the scents were recorded and turned into haiku poems.