The fragrance that has been created by IFF to accompany the portrait is a typical formula for a pomander from the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. It includes nutmeg, cloves, rosemary, cinnamon, rose, ambergris (produced in the bowels of the sperm whale), and civet (produced in the perineal glands of the civet cat). Certain ingredients were expensive, as nutmeg and cloves were imported from south-east Asia, and ambergris was very rare. The pomander in Besserer’s portrait creates a fragrant atmosphere for his worship, and it magnifies his status through the precious ingredients.
— Follow Your Nose: a Guided Tour with Smells is now open at Museum Ulm in Germany; the pomander scent was created for Portrait of Eitel Besserer. Read more in NOW OPEN: Follow your Nose at Museum Ulm at Odeuropa.