SmellScape Seoul 2017: Inside ⇄ Outside

T Sensing Sissel Tolaas

All cities – as built environments – contain accidental and overlooked smells as part of their identity. Nevertheless, these smells shape spatial perception much more powerfully then light or sound. Our olfactory systems navigate using our subconscious and memory as much as they navigate through cultural stereotypes and recognizing urban structures. They reveal unexplored layers of existence in the different areas of Seoul, helping us to tell alternative narratives. This project connects the Donuimun Museum Village to the Dongdaemun Design Plaza in an unconventional way: through overlooked common SMELLS. In between the DMV and the DDP, important overlooked smell sources were found, collected and replicated. Inside the DMV the de-contextualized and replicated smells from Seoul are displayed in the context of a large map of Seoul. The focus is on the nature of the specific smells and why they were chosen to represent Seoul. The visitor is invited to smell the displayed city smell sources. Then by looking at the indoor map they will know in which locations in the city the displayed smells were collected. The visitor is also encouraged to add comments to a handout map, which includes an invitation to visit the original smell source locations in the real, outside neighborhoods. Only by visiting the smell source locations can one get to know what the smells are and what causes them. Upon finding a smell source they will see and experience the context from which the smells were collected. Comments from visits to the site are very welcome.