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#LAsmellslike: Which scents represent your neighborhood?

Visitors try on scents at the
Visitors try on scents at the "Sillage" exhibit at the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego.
Courtesy Brian Goeltzenleucter
Visitors try on scents at the
Neighborhood scents for the "Sillage" exhibit.
Courtesy Brian Goeltzenleucter

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Jasmine, eucalyptus, Mexican food, hot asphalt, wet grass, seawater and motor oil are only some of the smells featured in artist Brian Goelztenleuchter’s “scentscapes” of L.A. neighborhoods.

In his upcoming show “Sillage,” at the Santa Monica Museum of Art, Goeltzenleuchter will showcase a series of scents inspired by different parts of L.A.: The scents are intended to capture the mood of different neighborhoods. Respondents to the survey online chimed in from across the city (bacon-wrapped hot dogs, concrete and marijuana were all popular submissions).

Goeltzenleuchter responded with olfactory manipulations, mixing his own blends to capture the smell of asphalt or metallic heat. Visitors to his exhibition at SMMoA can smell (and even wear) scents from Downtown, Hollywood, Northwest Los Angeles, Silver Lake, South L.A. and the Westside.

What does your neighborhood smell like? How does scent factor into your perception or memory of places and neighborhoods?

“Sillage” will be on display at the Santa Monica Museum of Art on Saturday, June 28.


We asked you to weigh in with the hashtag #LAsmellslike. Here are some of your responses:


Brian Goeltzenleuchter, post-media artist focusing on olfactory and participatory art  whose works have been exhibited nationally and internationally