Fragrant vessels of light: Aromatique Candles
The latest addition to Aesop’s Home Care range is a trio of aromatic candles, each named for an ancient stargazer of note. Formulated in collaboration with perfumer Barnabé Fillion—with whom the company developed fragrances Marrakech Intense, Hwyl and Rōzu—the candles have been launched on the 5th of October 2020.
Each of the three imparts a sophisticated yet subtle fragrance. Ptolemy, whose name is inspired by the Roman scholar who catalogued the stars, is distinguished by smoky, deep green notes of Cypress, Cedar and Vetiver. Aganice, titled for the first female astronomer of Ancient Greece, blends bright, floral Mimosa with the warm, spicy notes of Cardamom and Tobacco. Callippus is marked by its resinous Frankincense and earthy Vetiver, and takes its name from the Greek astronomer and mathematician—a close observer of planetary movements.
‘We took inspiration from ancient astronomy and associated mythologies, and considered the historical significance of candles, seeking new aromatic blends that would engender a sense of equanimity and refuge from workaday concerns,’ says Dr Kate Forbes, the company’s Innovation Director. ‘As is customary in our partnership with Barnabé, scientific rigour worked hand-in-hand with ardent intellectual curiosity, and tradition with innovation.’
Often requested by customers, the candles are the first product of their kind for Aesop, and represent an alternative to the company’s signature Oil Burner Blends and aromatic Room Sprays; the latter also developed with Fillion. They are packaged in simple alabaster ceramic vessels – each with an individual quote on the inner lip -which may be repurposed for another use once the candle has burned down.
The creative direction draws a parallel between the stars and the humble combustion of wax as twin sources of light. Our celestial ceiling has primordial, cross-cultural significance, both as a source of comfort and a navigational aid—especially in seafaring journeys across the ‘wine-dark sea’, as Homer wrote in The Odyssey. The candles’ launch is accompanied by a series of original illustrations by Paris-based artist Mattis Dovier, whose work reinterprets the traditional medium of lithography for the digital age via pixel art and 8-bit animation. Here, images of wild waves and startled birds give way to calm seas, clear starry skies—and, eventually, safe harbour, found at last after a treacherous voyage.
Retail price 90€ (300gr)