LIMITED EDITION BLENDS
No imp’s ears are available for Limited Edition scents.
Presented in an amber apothecary glass vial.
Note: only 5ml bottles are offered in our limited edition scents. Please check the BPAL forum for stock updates. No samples can be requested for any limited edition scents, as they are not taken into consideration or assimilated into stock when the limited edition oils are made. Simply put: there are none to give. If you request a sample of a limited edition scent, we will swap for a random “permanent” scent.
Alternative FactsAdd to cart
The truth hurts — so why tell it? Muffle the blow with Alternative Facts.
FACT: Following White House advisor Kellyanne Conway’s January 22 appearance on “Meet The Press,” sales of George Orwell’s 1984 skyrocketed, making it the fifth-best selling book on Amazon.com.
ALTERNATIVE FACT: In under a week, President Trump’s administration has already managed to improve literacy, reflecting the public’s renewed interest in privatized education, as well as its rejection of the mainstream media in favor of more “traditional” forms of information-gathering.
See how easy that is? With the help of Alternative Facts, even the most unpalatable among us can preside over a gallery of glittering, candy-coated delusions — one in which reality itself conforms to our beliefs, sincerely-held or otherwise.
ALTERNATIVE FACTS: If you truly want to obfuscate what you really smell like, this is the scent for you! Sugar-crusted vanilla, a firecracker-blast of cherry and sour lemon, a hint of scuttling spiders, encroaching fog, and trumpets of bombast, bluff, and bluster.
Like its companion scent Fake News, proceeds from Alternative Facts will benefit the ACLU.
Fake NewsAdd to cart
2016 turned out to be the year of the NASTY WOMAN — and thanks to your purchases, BPAL was able to donate thousands of dollars to Planned Parenthood and Emily’s List!
Unfortunately, 2017 is already shaping up to be the year of FAKE NEWS. In anticipation of the upcoming inaugural proceedings — and the months, nay years of high-volume dishonesty that are to follow — we offer the following blend to help penetrate the dense fog of of misinformation that’s already begun settling around Truth, Justice, and other historically celebrated American ideals.
Wear it in vigilance as you sift through the memes, trolls, clickbait, hate-speech, and outright propaganda that continually threaten to overwhelm all the world’s kindness, wisdom, and informed expertise. Wear it in courage as you refute ignorance and insincerity at every turn — even from our nation’s highest-ranking figures — with indisputable facts from well-researched sources.
And try not to lose your sense of humor as you fight back, or your own essential humanity. As Anne Lamott once wrote: “You don’t always have to chop with the sword of truth. You can point with it too.”
FAKE NEWS: A scent of misdirection, of 140 frantic characters typed out in spite at 3am, and paranoia-clouded churlish accusations hurled at perceived enemies: crushed pink pepper pod, bitter white tobacco, gnarled patchouli, all covered in glinting, garish slashes of gold.
Proceeds from FAKE NEWS will go to the American Civil Liberties Union, non-partisan defender of the rights and liberties guaranteed by the Constitution and laws of the United States.
When purchasing, be sure to include your twitter handle in the Notes section of our order form — for every bottle you buy, we will tweet one fake news headline about you from our Twitter account (@BPAL).
Fire CockAdd to cart
A new year’s blessing! Peony, China’s national flower, with bamboo for flexibility, plum blossom for perseverance, courage, and hope, tangerine for wealth, orange for happiness, lychee for household peace, pine resin for constancy, golden kumquat for prosperity, King mandarin for good fortune, cypress for longevity, sticky rice cakes for abundance and hopes for a rich, sweet life, and a splash of blazing red of dragon’s blood to help you scare away the rampaging Nian.
Artwork by Aristotle Pramagioulis!
Nasty WomanAdd to cart
As you have no doubt heard, during the third presidential debate, Hillary described her plan to raise taxes on the rich in order to fund Social Security. She took a swing at him over him being a tax dodger (which he is).
“My Social Security payroll contribution will go up, as will Donald’s – if he can’t figure out how to get out of it.”
Trump interrupted her and said, “Such a nasty woman.”
These are two things uttered by the same man within the same hour:
“Such a nasty woman.”
“No one has more respect for women than me.”
Let’s put this pussy-grabbing, racist, predatory, misogynistic, hateful, irresponsible, ignorant, immature grotesquerie out of politics for good, and do what we can to ensure that he and his ilk never cast their miserable shadows over our political process again.
Nasty Woman: black fig and patchouli, filthy bourbon vanilla, honeyed amber oud, and loukhoum.
Proceeds will be split between Planned Parenthood and EMILY’s list.
Photo: Women marching in national suffrage demonstration in Washington, D.C., May 9, 1914.
Nevertheless, She PersistedAdd to cart
She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted.
A rallying call: golden oudh, frankincense, iris, and steel. Proceeds from this scent benefit EMILY’s List, an organization that supports electing pro-choice Democratic women to office.
Jeanne d’Arc, Albert Lynch
PalmyraOut of Stock
White as hot steel the broad sun mounts the skies,
The burning vapors quivering as they rise.
No beast, no wandering bird, doth hither come,
Not e’en an insect wakes her drowsy hum.
But lo! the hills on which some dark curse rests,
Barren their sides, all rocks their dreary crests,
Approach with frowns, and form a savage dell,
Where snakes retreat, and vultures love to dwell.
Silent and strange along this craggy way,
Rise countless towers that brave thy hand, Decay!
Did busy men once live, and flourish here,
Their palaces yon piles so old and drear?
Draw nearer,—scan each building’s dark recess;
What mean those crumbling bones, that mouldered dress?
Yes, these are tombs, as many a mummy shows,
Where man in distant ages found repose;
The street of graves! where kings laid down their pride,
And many a restless phantom yet may glide:
Murdered Longinus here may wander still,
And she whose dust was laid by Tibur’s hill,
Far-famed Zenobia, for her kingdom wail,
Sweeping with viewless form the desert gale.
Deserted Tadmor! queen of Syria’s wild!
Well mayst thou fill with rapture Fancy’s child;
Yet not by day—too garish, harsh, and rude—
The eye should scan thy fairy solitude;
But when the still moon pours her hallowing beam,
And crumbling shrine and palace whitely gleam,
Then pause beneath the lofty arch, and there
Survey the mouldings rich and sculptures fair;
See how like spectral giants columns stand,
And cast long shadows o’er the yellow sand;
How the soft light on marble tracery plays,
And busts look life-like through that silvery haze!
Tread the long colonnade, where Traffic’s throng,
And chief and sage were wont to sweep along;
Ruin on ruin mouldering, still and lone,
Arch following arch, fane, massy wall o’erthrown,
And still beyond, some line of columns gray,
In long perspective stretching far away,—
These will the stars in desolation show,
Shedding o’er all a soft ethereal glow,
Till beauty scarce of earth around us beams,
And like the home of spirits, Tadmor seems.
And are no dwellers here?—no beings found
Within Palmyra’s wide and haunted bound?
Yes, come and see—where Beauty, in old days,
Touched her sweet harp, and blushed at her own praise;
There rears the desert-bird her callow brood,
And shrieks along the untrodden solitude.
Yes, come and see—where kings in council sate
On ivory thrones, mid all the pomp of state;
There mopes the owl with shining sleepless eye,
And growls the hyena, stealing slowly by.
Commerce in Tadmor fixed her gorgeous seat;
Her voice was heard through every busy street:
The caravan brought gems from Persia’s shore,
Tyre sent her cloths, and Ind her golden store;
And this long ages saw, till Syria’s mart
Drew and poured forth wealth’s streams,—a mighty heart!
Now come and see—within yon pillared walls,
Mid tottering shafts and broken capitals,
Squalid and lorn, cut off from all mankind,
In tattered garbs, to wretchedness consigned,
A few poor Arabs crouch,—with senseless stare
They view the pomp and beauty lingering there,
Tend their lean goats, to Mecca idly bow,
The only merchants, only princes now!
City of Solomon! whose fame and power,
And wondrous wealth, began in earth’s young hour;
How, mid her fallen pomp, thought wanders back
O’er vanished days,—a sad yet dazzling track.
Arabia’s fierce and desolating horde,
Rome’s conquering eagle, Babylonia’s sword,
All we behold, but chief one form appears,
Rising all radiant from the gulf of years:
Proud is her step, her dark eye varying oft,
Now flashing fire, now languishingly soft;
The jewelled crown well suits that brow serene,—
’T is great Zenobia, Tadmor’s glorious queen.
Beauty hath oft put War’s dread helmet on,
Since her who ruled earth-conquering Babylon;
Yet not Semiramis, who boasts her bays,
Nor Gaul’s bold maid, who graced these later days,
Swayed the rough hearts of men with wilder power,
Or met more bravely battle’s dreadful hour,
Than she on whom pleased fame and fortune smiled,
The dark-haired mistress of the Syrian wild.
But now the conqueror’s brighter hour has passed,
And fair Zenobia’s star goes down at last.
The Roman comes,—his legions file around
Doomed Tadmor’s walls, to deafening trumpets’ sound.
Aurelian bids the desert princess yield,
But hark! her answer—clashing sword and shield!
Girt by her chiefs, her proud plumed head she rears,
Defies the foe, and each faint spirit cheers;
Her milk-white courser prances round the wall,
Her gestures, looks, and words inspiring all.
Through opened gates her troops are sallying now,
Still in their front appears that dauntless brow;
Where’er her silver wand is seen to wave,
There rush the boldest, and there fall the brave,
And when borne back by Rome’s immense array,
She fights retreating, pauses still to slay.
But ceaseless war, and famine’s tortures slow,
Wear bravery out, and bring Palmyra low.
’T was then the Queen, to crush the despot’s might,
Passed from the gates beneath the veil of night,
Hers still the hope from Persia aid to call,
Save her loved land, and stay Palmyra’s fall.
With fluttering heart, but calm and fearless eye,
Across the trackless desert see her fly!
On swept the camel with unflagging speed,
As though he knew that hour of deadly need;
Her Syrian guards o’er Arab steeds might lean,
But not keep pace with her, their flying Queen.
What recked she drifting sand or scorching sun?
What recked she pain or toil, that mission done?
Come hunger, thirst,—on, on her course must be,
Each swift-winged hour brought, Tadmor, doom to thee!
Lo! on their track, through clouds of rising sand,
Bright helms were seen, now glittered spear and brand;
Then horsemen forward dashed,—a long-drawn row,—
’T was Rome’s dread troops, the fierce pursuing foe!
They saw, and hailed,—across the waste was borne
The hoarse, deep note of many a trumpet-horn;
And on they came, like winds careering fast,
Not half so fearful sweeps the simoom blast;
They brought for her who scoured those desert plains,
Woe and disgrace, captivity and chains.
But still Zenobia flew; the steeds that bore
Her guards had sunk,—those chiefs could aid no more;
And now that camel shaped his course alone,—
He reared his head as louder blasts were blown,
And strained each nerve, his soft black drooping eye
Telling of suffering, fear, and agony;
Unhappy, faithful thing! that still would brave
Toil, peril, death, his royal charge to save.
’T was vain: as hounds at length chase down the deer,
The Roman horsemen drew more near and near;
Though some fell back, or sank upon the way,
Yet others, slowly gaining, reached the prey.
They halted, wheeled,—their armor’s dazzling sheen
Formed a dread wall round Syria’s fated queen;
Hope fled her breast,—she yielded,—ruined now,
But still majestic shone that high-born brow.
Ah! as they led their prisoner o’er the plain,
No more to rule, but grace a tyrant’s train,
And, exiled, pine where wooded Anio sweeps,
Far from her desert home and palmy steeps,
The sun of Syria’s power went down in night,
On Freedom’s tree there rained a withering blight,
Glory to proud Palmyra sighed adieu,
And o’er her shrines Destruction’s angel flew.
– Nicholas Michell
Golden amber and galbanum with frankincense, myrrh, Balm of Gilead, vanilla-infused sandalwood, sand-smoothed leather, and Ceylon cinnamon.
All proceeds after cost of manufacture benefit the UNHCR’s efforts to aid refugees and meet humanitarian needs.
Seven Word Story: GluttonyAdd to cart
The subject of our latest #BPAL7wordstory contest was Gluttony. The winning entry was submitted by Crystal Rose-Thompson:
The Sirens Eagerly Beckoned the Approaching Ship
Sea splash on murky labdanum and gleaming olibanum, veiled in lavender, diaphanous osmanthus, gilded saffron, and honey incense.
Seven Word Story: LustAdd to cart
Quoth one of the wordiest humans who ever lived: “Brevity is the soul of wit.”
This spring we challenged friends and fans to answer that call, baring their souls (and more) in our steamy, Lust-themed #BPAL7wordstory contest.
“Seduce us in seven!” we demanded, promising the winning story would be enshrined in a Limited Edition fragrance. The response was overwhelming — and downright filthy. Over eight hundred entries later, Lust found its new champion. The winning story, submitted via Twitter by @GeekDame, took flight in our perfumer’s imagination and resulted in the following myth-tinged tryst.
Congrats to the winner, and keep your quills sharp! #BPAL7wordstory is only getting started.
He breathed smoke across her pomegranate-stained lips.
Chthonic incense and blood-red pomegranate.
Seven Word Story: SlothAdd to cart
As Baudelaire once wrote, “We revel in the laxness of the path we take.” As such, we weren’t convinced anyone would bother entering the Sloth edition of our #BPAL7wordstory contest.
Somehow, hundreds of you summoned the strength to string seven words together — plus the dozens who cheekily declined to muster more than six. The winning entry by Amy DeNies epitomizes that (lack of) effort with aplomb.
Congrats to our winner, and keep those heavy eyelids propped open — #BPAL7wordstory could strike again at any time.
can’t commit to finishing a whole banana
The effort is too much: banana weighed down by blackened cacao, bourbon vetiver, and tobacco absolute.
Seven Word Story: WrathAdd to cart
The subject of our latest #BPAL7wordstory contest was WRATH. The winning entry was submitted by Miss Paulette:
The poison worked slowly, to her delight.
Bitter almond swirled into black patchouli, with red amber, rum absolute, and lemon peel.
Starstruck: Pisces 2016Add to cart
Mutable Water: the essence of faith. This is the scent of belief, be it in oneself, mankind, the gods, our myths, or our potential. This is the willingness to explore the darkness, the push towards the edges of fantasy or delirium. This is the perfume of the Psychopomp and the Mystic, the Saint and the Madman; this is the scent of the lifegiving salt of blood and ocean, and the darkest depths of the sea. Red musk and brine, ships’ planks of thorny acacia, an indescribable abyssophelagic musk, soporific lavender, and a strange, sweet waft of benzoin.
Theoi NomioiAdd to cart
In response to the National Park Service retweeting a New York Times piece on Trump’s Inauguration numbers, Trump’s fragile ego demanded that his administration order the NPS to stop all tweets.
The National Park Service refuses to be muzzled. On January 24th, South Dakota’s Badlands National Park social media team defiantly posted a series of climate change facts from the National Wildlife Federation before being shut down. Since then, anonymous employees from the National Park Service started a rogue twitter account:
These courageous federal employees are risking their careers to ensure that the public is kept informed on issues of climate change. They are fighting for transparency, truth, and science, and they deserve every ounce of support we can offer them. Tweet, email, FB, and phone in your support. Visit your local National Parks and thank the employees there in person. Donate to the National Parks Conservation Association and the National Park Foundation.
For them, for us, for the sake of the First Amendment, the environment, our state parks, and our future, we honor the bravery and chutzpah of these NPS employees with a scent that benefits the National Parks Conservation Association and the National Park Foundation.
The Theoi Nomioi are the gods and spirits of the wild: the countryside, the pastures, the forests. Under their auspices, untamed nature thrives, the beasts of the wild feast and multiply, the mountains reach to the heavens with their stony, snow-capped fingers, and the forests grow thick and dark with mystery.
The National Parks Conservation Association
“Since 1919, the National Parks Conservation Association has been the leading voice of the American people in the fight to safeguard the scenic beauty, wildlife, and historic and cultural treasures of the largest and most diverse park system in the world. Help us assure the future of our beloved national parks.”
The National Park Foundation
“The National Park Foundation protects America’s special places, connects people to nature and inspires the next generation of park stewards.”
Limited Edition - Lupercalia 2017
Delight in DisorderAdd to cart
A sweet disorder in the dress
Kindles in clothes a wantonness;
A lawn about the shoulders thrown
Into a fine distraction;
An erring lace, which here and there
Enthrals the crimson stomacher;
A cuff neglectful, and thereby
Ribands to flow confusedly;
A winning wave, deserving note,
In the tempestuous petticoat;
A careless shoe-string, in whose tie
I see a wild civility:
Do more bewitch me, than when art
Is too precise in every part.
– Robert Herrick
A sweet disorder in the dress: crimson musk and wild cherry.
I Too Beneath Your MoonAdd to cart
I too beneath your moon, almighty Sex,
Go forth at nightfall crying like a cat,
Leaving the lofty tower I laboured at
For birds to foul and boys and girls to vex
– Edna St. Vincent Millay
Vanilla cream, white patchouli, French lavender, bergamot, and apple.
Importune Me No MoreAdd to cart
You dainty dame, for that you be so coy,
I will so pluck your plumes as you shall say no more:
Go, go, go, seek some other where, importune me no more.
– Queen Elizabeth I
Red roses, red carnation, and grandiflorum jasmine grounded by regal amber and sweet, dark patchouli.
LuperciAdd to cart
Piss off, Saint Valentine! Lupercalia is an ancient Roman celebration, held on February 15th, that kicked in the advent of Spring with a very, very festive purification, fertility and sexuality ritual. The ritual began near the cave of Lupercal on the Palatine, an area sacred to Faunus, as well as Ruminia, Romulus and Remus. During Lupercalia, Vestal Virgins first made offerings of sacred cakes to the fig tree under which the she-wolf suckled the Sacred Twins. A dog and two goats were then offered in sacrifice to Faunus. The blood of the sacrifice was smeared onto two naked patrician youths, who were assisted by the Virgins, and the blood was wiped clean with sacred wool dipped in milk. The youths donned the skins of the sacrificial goats, wielding whips made from the goat skins, and then led the priests and the Virgins around the pomarium, and around the base hills of Rome. This was a ceremony of great happiness and merriment, and was of particular interest to young women: being touched by the goat-whips young men that led the procession ensured their fertility in the coming year. It is believed that, after the initial rite, male participants would draw the name of an available maiden, with whom he spent the rest of the night. This scent is for the Luperci, the Chosen of Faunus, the Brothers of the Wolf: raw, down and dirty patchouli, Gurjam balsam, and essence of Sampson Root sweetened with the heightened sexuality of beeswax, virile juniper, oakmoss, ambrette seed over honey and East African musk.
SmutAdd to cart
Three swarthy, smutty musks sweetened with sugar and woozy with dark booze notes.
Snake SkinAdd to cart
For he seemed to me again like a king,
Like a king in exile, uncrowned in the underworld,
Now due to be crowned again.
A sinuous leather variant of BPAL’s Snake Oil.
Womb FurieAdd to cart
In the middle of the flanks of women lies the womb, a female viscus, closely resembling an animal; for it is moved of itself hither and thither in the flanks, also upwards in a direct line to below the cartilage of the thorax and also obliquely to the right or to the left, either to the liver or spleen; and it likewise is subject to falling downwards, and, in a word, it is altogether erratic. It delights, also, in fragrant smells, and advances towards them; and it has an aversion to fetid smells, and flees from them; and on the whole the womb is like an animal within an animal.
— Aretaeus the Cappadocian
Oh, that wily womb! Hippocrates and his followers considered the womb a mobile creature, causing mayhem as it writhed its way through a woman’s body. Sometimes this ornery organ, due to lack of sexual activity, would create conflicts within a woman’s system or would become blocked itself, causing anxiety, nervousness, water retention, and sleeplessness. With the assistance of doctors, nursemaids, hand tools, or, occasionally, self-manipulation, this vexing condition could be alleviated through hysterical paroxysms.
Or, as we call it nowadays: orgasm.
An itch that needs to be scratched: Snake Oil and three types of honey.
Limited Edition - Lupercalia 2017 - Box of Chocolates
We’re not always all about death, sex, and debauchery. We like chocolate, too!
Dark Chocolate, Red Pepper Flake, and Dried Red FruitsAdd to cart
Dark Chocolate, Whiskey, and Cardamom-Infused CaramelAdd to cart
Milk Chocolate, Cacao Cream, Ceylon Cinnamon, and Coffee AbsoluteAdd to cart
White Chocolate and Asian PearAdd to cart
White Chocolate, Marshmallow, Honey, and Goat’s MilkAdd to cart
Limited Edition - Lupercalia 2017 - Lupercalia Single Notes
Lupercalia Single Note: LatexAdd to cart
With a hint of French chalk to ensure your catsuit goes on without a hitch.
Lupercalia Single Note: Riding CropAdd to cart
Limited Edition - Lupercalia 2017 - Novel Ideas for Secret Amusements
We have listed the notes for your edification and convenience. However, as with all of our visual art sets, we prefer not to offer any descriptive passages for these scents in order to maximize the visual / olfactory experience.
Novel Ideas For Secret Amusements is a Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab Salon Limited Edition series, running from 9 February 2017 until 13 April 2017.
Historic Japanese erotica is presented within, and thus, this exhibit contains explicit depictions of sexual acts and nudity.
Viewer discretion is advised.
A Source of Sexual Knowledge to Individuals and CouplesAdd to cart
Green tea and honey with a touch of wasabi.
Adventure with Bandits in a KagoAdd to cart
Nectarine and pearl peach, white frankincense, and gardenia.
An Interlude After SakeAdd to cart
Fir needle and white tea with crushed fresh ginger, white amber, apricot, and oakmoss.
Beneath the KotatsuAdd to cart
Cedarwood, orange blossom, Florentine iris, and golden vanilla.
Cave of TreasuresAdd to cart
Sweet amber and golden honey, cream accord, blue lilac, and a drop of cardamom.
Consoling Pussy of Horse Face MountainAdd to cart
Tuberose incense, blue wisteria, and oakmoss.
Delightful Visitor Among the HaystacksAdd to cart
Chrysanthemum incense and red carnation.
Diligent Instruction for the Bridal NightAdd to cart
Sugar dusted strawberries and mallow blossoms.
Entertaining the Heian Court MaidenAdd to cart
Honey oudh and bourbon vanilla.
Enthusiastic Afternoon LiaisonAdd to cart
White sandalwood, sweet incense, cypress, ambrette seed, champaca, and lotus pods.
Festival OrgyAdd to cart
Soft mosses, lotus petals, bamboo wood, ylang ylang, and vanilla sandalwood.
Flickering LanternAdd to cart
Beeswax, tobacco leaf, a whiff of smoke, and purple rose petals.
Grappling OctopusAdd to cart
Green tea and honey with orange peel, hay absolute, bergamot, and cypress.
HoîruAdd to cart
Bourbon vanilla and suede leather, tonka and patchouli, pale amber and blackened tea leaf, coconut husk and cashmere.
ImprovisationAdd to cart
White tea, fig, honey, and sweet olive.
Jinbari Nyûdô Bobo DokisuAdd to cart
Blueberry musk, lotus, and green tea.
KarikkotsuAdd to cart
White oud and white sandalwood, iris pallida, blonde woods, and pink pepper.
Keichu Nyoetsu Warai DoguAdd to cart
Proceeds from this blend will be donated to Planned Parenthood. Golden sandalwood, soft leather, champaca resin, and coconut.
Kitten with Shamisen Daydreams of a Phallus PalanquinAdd to cart
Rice milk, white musk, and pear.
Lovers Embrace Under a Cock KimonoAdd to cart
Amber and balsam peru with patchouli, blood orange, and rose geranium.
Maiko with Hair UnboundAdd to cart
Goat’s milk, coconut, rice milk, honey carnation, and sugar.
The Midnight Reunion with His Lost WifeAdd to cart
Hinoki wood, grave moss, vetiver, and cypress.
Limited Edition - Lupercalia 2017 - Pleasures of the Imagination
How delightful are the pleasures of the imagination! In those delectable moments, the whole world is ours; not a single creature resists us, we devastate the world, we repopulate it with new objects which, in turn, we immolate. The means to every crime is ours, and we employ them all, we multiply the horror a hundredfold.
IAdd to cart
Black amber, leather, and myrrh.
IIAdd to cart
White tobacco, leather, and white sandalwood.
IIIAdd to cart
Turkish tobacco, black leather, cinnamon, benzoin, and smoked honey.
IVAdd to cart
White tea blossom, jasmine sambac, white musk, and leather.
VAdd to cart
Black leather, red sandalwood, orris root, tobacco absolute, oakmoss, and sweet patchouli.
Limited Edition - Lupercalia 2017 - The Devil’s Lovers
DIABOLICAL BEAUTY COMES TO DOWNTOWN ARKHAM
The Devil’s Lovers: the Erotic Art of Félicien Rops
on view at the Pickman Gallery from February 8 to April 13, 2017
Arkham, MA (Feb 1, 2017)— On view from February 8 through April 13, 2017, at Pickman Gallery, Arkham, MA, The Devil’s Lovers: the Erotic Art of Félicien Rops showcases the work of the renowned Belgian illustrator, engraver, and printmaker, exploring the themes of death and eroticism, and the defiance inherent to Satanic symbolism that is essential to his work. The Devil’s Lovers was generously lent to Pickman Gallery from Abbess Madgalena Eva of Łódź‘s private collection, which was previously housed by Le Couvent des Sœurs du Plaisir du Diable in Brussels.
Rops spent two years in Belgium evading creditors, where he fell under the spell of the poet Charles Baudelaire. Their friendship profoundly affected Rops’ aesthetic, and he began to express his own tortured misanthropy through macabre erotic illustrations and his social observations through sex-charged grotesqueries and Baudelarian phantasmagoria. This collection of Rops’ artwork is a celebration of death, sex, and political and social rebellion, all reflected through a distinctly Mephistophelean lens.
A private reception and Black Mass will be held at Pickman Gallery during the lunar eclipse on February 11, 2017, from midnight until 3am. RSVP required. Refreshments provided by Dagon Hollow Vineyard, Zadok’s Sushi Barn, and the Old Arkham Cheese Shoppe. The reception will be preceded by an open-air lecture in the galley veranda, “Power and Sexuality Among Society’s Disinherited”.
The Devil’s Lovers was made possible by the charitable support of Elizabeth Barrial, director of the Black Phoenix Foundation for the Arts, and TJ Barrial, Visual Arts Professor and Department Chair at the Dunwich Academy of Arts, and a grant generously provided by the Arkham Women’s Knitting Club and Social. The exhibition was organized for the Celephaïs Athenæum by Brian Constantine, Curator of Sculpture for the Clark Ashton Smith Memorial Gallery.
About the Pickman Gallery
The Pickman Gallery is the Miskatonic Valley’s premier privately-owned art gallery. Founded in 1923 by interdimensionally renowned portrait artist Richard Upton Pickman, the Gallery offers the Miskatonic Valley community a dynamic roster of stimulating, dread-provoking exhibitions and enriching public programs. Though the Pickman generally focuses on Aestheticism and Decadence, nearly all artistic movements have been represented throughout the years. Exhibitions organized by the Pickman have featured the works of both local and international artists, and have encompassed all of the visual arts, including printmaking, photography, sculpture, video, film, and performance.
À Un Dîner D’AthéesAdd to cart
White lavender and ambrette seed, grey patchouli, rum absolute, and vetiver.
Dans Les CoulissesAdd to cart
Red musk, orris root, and bergamot with blackcurrant, pink pepper, and red leather accord.
Danse de la MortAdd to cart
White sandalwood, opium tar, tobacco leaf, and white amber.
Détritus HumainAdd to cart
Sweet red vetiver, 13-year aged patchouli, mahogany oudh, and shadow musk.
Die BegierdeAdd to cart
Pink rose petals, rose water, sugared carnation, and white cognac.
EffronterieAdd to cart
White flowers and brittle white musk with a streak of pomegranate.
Étude de DéshabilléAdd to cart
Black amber, 7-year aged patchouli, cashmeran, and tobacco leaf.
FaunAdd to cart
Scattered leaves, fir needle, and thick honey musk.
HumaniteAdd to cart
Tuberose, white peach, orange blossom, lemon peel, and caramelized vanilla.
Initiation SentimentaleAdd to cart
Wisteria and white sandalwood with lilac, white tea, champaca, black pepper, benzoin, and white clove.
L’AgonieAdd to cart
Apricot and blood orange with dragon’s blood absolute, golden vanilla, chamomile, white honey, and oudh.
L’EnlèvementAdd to cart
Mandrake root, broom straw, leather, cinnamon, fig, dark musk, and tonka.
L’IdoleAdd to cart
Golden amber, juniper berry, white sage, leather, cardamom, and black pepper.
La Dame au CochonAdd to cart
White tobacco and apple, white musk and angelica, immortelle and terebinth, juniper and violet leaf.
La PierreuseAdd to cart
Deep red roses stained by tobacco.
La Prostitution et la Folie Dominent le MondeAdd to cart
Sweet cream vanilla, white sugar, jasmine blossom, and a drop of star anise.
La TentationAdd to cart
Honeyed patchouli and apple musk with a sliver of white fig.
Le Dessous de Cartes D’Une Partie de WhistAdd to cart
Absinthe, white clove, and patchouli.
Le Miroir de la CoquetterieAdd to cart
Honeyed vanilla and jasmine petals dirtied by labdanum, patchouli, and vetiver.
Le Rideau CramoisiAdd to cart
Honeyed leather and tonka with clove, champaca musk, and opium tar.
Le Vice SuprêmeAdd to cart
Leather and a splash of gin, whiskey swirled tobacco, rose petals, and bourbon vanilla.
Les Démons FroidsAdd to cart
Benzoin and white juniper with dark musk, tobacco, nag champa, and oudh.
Les Incubes et des SuccubesAdd to cart
Blackberry pulp, Bordeaux wine, grape leaves, and wild patchouli.
Mors SyphiliticaAdd to cart
Saffron oudh and red sandalwood.
Qui Aime Bien Châtie BienAdd to cart
Daffodil petals and lavender tulips, blonde woods, freesia, and a touch of pale honey.
Limited Edition - The Song of Creation 2016
AudumlaAdd to cart
Then said Gangleri: “Where dwelt Ymir, or wherein did he find sustenance?” Hárr answered: “Straightway after the rime dripped, there sprang from it the cow called Audumla; four streams of milk ran from her udders, and she nourished Ymir.” Then asked Gangleri: “Wherewithal was the cow nourished?” And Hárr made answer:
“She licked the ice-blocks, which were salty; and the first day that she licked the blocks, there came forth from the blocks in the evening a man’s hair; the second day, a man’s head; the third day the whole man was there.”
The primordial mother, the first nourisher: four streams of milk, white honey, frankincense, motherwort, and angelica root.
BestlaAdd to cart
The first queen, daughter of giants: radiant amber, black fig, and rose oud.
Of EarthAdd to cart
Then said Gangleri: These are great tidings which I now hear; that is a wondrous great piece of craftsmanship, and cunningly made. How was the earth contrived?” And Hárr answered: “She is ring-shaped without, and round about her without lieth the deep sea; and along the strand of that sea they gave lands to the races of giants for habitation. But on the inner earth they made a citadel round about the world against the hostility of the giants, and for their citadel they raised up the brows of Ymir the giant, and called that place Midgard. They took also his brain and cast it in the air, and made from it the clouds, as is here said:
Of Ymir's flesh | the earth was fashioned,
And of his sweat the sea;
Crags of his bones, | trees of his hair,
And of his skull the sky.
Then of his brows | the blithe gods made
Midgard for sons of men;
And of his brain | the bitter-mooded
Clouds were all created.”
Flesh into verdant soil. The sweat of the sea. Black pine, oak, and cedar. Bitter clouds fashioned of grey amber, white tobacco, and muguet.
Savage ForeverAdd to cart
And Thridi said: “Just as cold arose out of Niflheim, and all terrible things, so also all that looked toward Múspellheim became hot and glowing; but Ginnungagap was as mild as windless air, and when the breath of heat met the rime, so that it melted and dripped, life was quickened from the yeast-drops, by the power of that which sent the heat, and became a man's form. And that man is named Ymir, but the Rime-Giants call him Aurgelimir…
But concerning this says Vafthrúdnir the giant:
Out of the Ice-waves | issued venom-drops,
Waxing until | a giant was;
Thence are our kindred | come all together,–
So it is | they are savage forever.”
A giant born of the force of elemental savagery, given form by venom and ice: frozen ambergris and dark, primal musk, molten amber, black cypress, and frost-limned opoponax.
The Deluge of BloodAdd to cart
Then said Gangleri: “What covenant was between them, or which was the stronger?” And Hárr answered: “The sons of Borr slew Ymir the giant; lo, where he fell there gushed forth so much blood out of his wounds that with it they drowned all the race of the Rime-Giants, save that one, whom giants call Bergelmir, escaped with his household; he went upon his ship, and his wife with him, and they were safe there. And from them are come the races of the Rime-Giants, as is said here:
Untold ages | ere earth was shapen,
Then was Bergelmir born;
That first I recall, | how the famous wise giant
On the deck of the ship was laid down.”
A torrent of red musk, Dracaena draco, red pepper, black patchouli, nagarmotha, and red ginger.
The HeavensAdd to cart
Then said Gangleri: “What was done then by Borr's sons, if thou believe that they be gods?” Hárr replied: “In this matter there is no little to be said. They took Ymir and bore him into the middle of the Yawning Void, and made of him the earth: of his blood the sea and the waters; the land was made of his flesh, and the crags of his bones; gravel and stones they fashioned from his teeth and his grinders and from those bones that were broken.” And Jafnhárr said: “Of the blood, which ran and welled forth freely out of his wounds, they made the sea, when they had formed and made firm the earth together, and laid the sea in a ring round about her; and it may well seem a hard thing to most men to cross over it.” Then said Thridi: “They took his skull also, and made of it the heaven, and set it up over the earth with four corners; and under each corner they set a dwarf: the names of these are East, West, North, and South. Then they took the glowing embers and sparks that burst forth and had been cast out of Múspellheim, and set them in the midst of the Yawning Void, in the heaven, both above and below, to illumine heaven and earth. They assigned places to all fires: to some in heaven, some wandered free under the heavens; nevertheless, to these also they gave a place, and shaped them courses. It is said in old “songs, that from these the days were reckoned, and the tale of years told, as is said in Völuspá:
The sun knew not | where she had housing;
The moon knew not | what Might he had;
The stars knew not | where stood their places.
Thus was it ere | the earth was fashioned.”
The sun knew not, the moon knew not, the stars knew not: the blood of the sea and the firelight of wandering star-sparks beneath the skull-dome of heaven. Salt and wind and the first rains, glittering starlight fashioned of white rose oud, lavender, white musk, champagne grape and petitgrain, and heaven’s vault constructed of bone-white sandalwood and purest frankincense.
The Mist-WorldAdd to cart
Then said Jafnhárr: “It was many ages before the earth was shaped that the Mist-World was made; and midmost within it lies the well that is called Hvergelmir, from which spring the rivers called Svöl, Gunnthrá, Fjörm, Fimbulthul, Slídr and Hríd, Sylgr and Ylgr, Víd, Leiptr; Gjöll is hard by Hel-gates.”
The first vision, obfuscated by fog sprung from Hvergelmir: a world within dream, formed of nebulous possibility. Thin strands of white resin-smoke, star jasmine, and white violet.
The Sons of Buri, The Sons of BorrAdd to cart
He is named Búri: he was fair of feature, great and mighty. He begat a son called Borr, who wedded the woman named Bestla, daughter of Bölthorn the giant; and they had three sons: one was Odin, the second Vili, the third Vé. And this is my belief, that he, Odin, with his brothers, must be ruler of heaven and earth; we hold that he must be so called; so is that man called whom we know to be mightiest and most worthy of honor, and ye do well to let him be so called.”
The bloodline of the first gods: golden mead, white sage, and mugwort.
The Sweat of the Rime-GiantsAdd to cart
Then said Gangleri: “How did the races grow thence, or after what fashion was it brought to pass that more men came into being? Or do ye hold him God, of whom ye but now spake?” And Jafnhárr answered: “By no means do we acknowledge him God; he was evil and all his kindred: we call them Rime-Giants. Now it is said that when he slept, a sweat came upon him, and there grew under his left hand a man and a woman, and one of his feet begat a son with the other; and thus the races are come; these are the Rime-Giants. The old Rime-Giant, him we call Ymir.”
The first people: mugwort and thyme, fennel and frankincense, honey and myrrh.
The Yawning VoidAdd to cart
Gangleri asked: “How were things wrought, ere the races were and the tribes of men increased?” Then said Hárr: “The streams called Ice-waves, those which were so long come from the fountain-heads that the yeasty venom upon them had hardened like the slag that runs out of the fire,–these then became ice; and when the ice halted and ceased to run, then it froze over above. But the drizzling rain that rose from the venom congealed to rime, and the rime increased, frost over frost, each over the other, even into Ginnungagap, the Yawning Void.” Then spake Jafnhárr: “Ginnungagap, which faced toward the northern quarter, became filled with heaviness, and masses of ice and rime, and from within, drizzling rain and gusts; but the southern part of the Yawning Void was lighted by those sparks and glowing masses which flew out of Múspellheim.”
Ice and rime and congealing venom, frost over frost, forever into the void: salt-strange rain and floes of hoarfrost, antediluvian poisons, and radiant sparks from Múspellheim’s furnaces.
When Nothing WasAdd to cart
Gangleri said: “What was the beginning, or how began it, or what was before it?” Hárr answered: “As is told in Völuspá:
Erst was the age | when nothing was:
Nor sand nor sea, | nor chilling stream-waves;
Earth was not found, | nor Ether-Heaven,–
A Yawning Gap, | but grass was none.”
The darkness beyond darkness, nothing before nothing, the time before all: an opium-dark void, lightless in nihility, silent in nonbeing.
Limited Edition - Aros Morbus: Mors Nigra
O happy posterity, who will not experience such abysmal woe and will look upon our testimony as a fable.
On the 20th of Mach, 1345, it is believed that a triple conjunction of Saturn, Jupiter and Mars in Aquarius harbingered one of the most catastrophic pandemics in all of human history, resulting in the deaths of between 75 and 200 million people in Eurasia, and initiating a death culture that would last well into our time.
Austin Coppock – one of the most talented, eloquent astrologers of our age – shares his insight:
It is a contemporary conceit to believe that plague is no longer with us. The post WWII years saw the humans triumph over a host of age-old afflictions. Polio, whooping cough tuberculosis and more fell one-by-one to the scalpel of modern science. Yet these gains, taken for granted, grow smaller every year. Long slumbering diseases have been roused, and those which were scheduled for elimination have shown dogged resistance to humanity’s best efforts. Plague is thus not a thing of the past, but an everpresent horseman, keeping pace with human progress. Though we may have pulled into a small lead, we have by no means outrun this dark rider.
Those who came before us knew well that this rider was forever at their back, and thus lived in anticipation of his terrible arrival. It should thus be in no way shocking to find that astrologers throughout history have done their very best to predict the times at which the waves of pestilence would crash against our shore. In a report commissioned by King Phillip VI from the University of Paris’ Medical Faculty in 1348, the fault of the great plague was thought to lie in a rare conjunction of Saturn, Jupiter and Mars in Aquarius which had occurred some years earlier, in 1345. The report pointed to the malefic nature of the Great Conjunction which had occurred those few years earlier, and how it augured a disease both swift and terrible. But Medical Faculty of the University of Paris had the benefit of hindsight, and their retrospective spared no one.
Several hundred years later, in 17th century England, lived an astrologer somewhat more prescient. William Lilly, the “English Merlin” wrote in his 1665 Almanac “Here is approaching great fatality unto mankind…there may be feared some dangerous mortality, or plague to be at hand, inflicting destruction.” Furthermore, he wrote of “a sickly summer…during June, July or August..” Accompanied by the macabre illustration seen below, Mr. Lilly’s prediction was more than satisfied, for a plague swept the city of London at the appointed time, claiming one in six of its inhabitants.
Though rarely regarded with much reverence, the configuration of the heavens still proclaims the coming of afflictions terrible and cruel. When in August of 2014, Mars the Lesser Malefic and Saturn the Greater Malefic made their conjunction in the tropical sign of the Scorpio, a plague of sanguine horror spread about the lands of western Africa— Ebola.
Yet the planets did not speak of these terrible genesis, but instead their climax. Perhaps it is not the dire conjunctions which bring about such sicknesses, but instead merely direct our awareness to them. The sinister red light of Mars and the dull grave dirt glow of Saturn may indeed only seem evil to us in that they serve to illuminate the work of the horseman forever at our side.
One must wonder, then, what the heavens of this year are trying to communicate, for Mars and Saturn spend an unusual amount of together in 2016. They flirt for all of April, and then separate, only to be joined bodily over the Summer. They will do so against the red backdrop of Antares- the Heart of the Scorpio. Three eyed, like the oni of Japanese folkore, one can only wonder what this trio of eyes sees in our spring and summer months.
The Plagues will be expanded with a study of the art and cultural impact of the Black Death this spring.
Conjunction of Mars and SaturnAdd to cart
Daemonorops, star thistle, wild tobacco, and asafoetida intensified by hemlock accord, black musk seed, mortuary cypress, and black gum leaf.
[Label illustration: Adolf Vogel]
In Time of PlagueAdd to cart
Adieu, farewell earth’s bliss!
This world uncertain is:
Fond are life’s lustful joys,
Death proves them all but toys.
None from his darts can fly;
I am sick, I must die—
Lord, have mercy on us!
Rich men, trust not in wealth,
Gold cannot buy you health;
Physic himself must fade;
All things to end are made;
The plague full swift goes by;
I am sick, I must die—
Lord, have mercy on us!
Beauty is but a flower
Which wrinkles will devour;
Brightness falls from the air;
Queens have died young and fair;
Dust hath closed Helen’s eye;
I am sick, I must die—
Lord, have mercy on us!
Strength stoops unto the grave,
Worms feed on Hector brave;
Swords may not fight with fate;
Earth still holds ope her gate;
Come, come! the bells do cry;
I am sick, I must die—
Lord, have mercy on us!
Wit with his wantonness
Tasteth death’s bitterness;
Hath no ears for to hear
What vain art can reply:
I am sick, I must die—
Lord, have mercy on us!
Haste therefore each degree
To welcome destiny;
Heaven is our heritage,
Earth but a player’s stage.
Mount we unto the sky;
I am sick, I must die—
Lord, have mercy on us!
– Thomas Nashe
Blackened roses against a backdrop of velvet opoponax, bitter clove, and tobacco abosolute.
Limited Edition - The Collected Poetic Works of Antonin Scalia
We’ve had myriad political figures throughout US history that have possessed acid tongues, but few in the modern era have provided such a constant stream of colorfully vitriolic superlatives as Antonin Scalia.
He is the federal court’s beat poet of indignation and right-wing rage.
For your pleasure, we present a line dedicated to SCOTUS’ reigning Sick Burn Champion, the cranky, flamboyant, inimitable Justice Antonin Gregory Scalia. Proceeds from every single bottle will be donated to the Southern Poverty Law Center, the Trevor Project, and the National Center for Transgender Equality.
Ask the Nearest HippieAdd to cart
Obergefell vs Hodges
Who ever thought that intimacy and spirituality [whatever that means] were freedoms? And if intimacy is, one would think Freedom of Intimacy is abridged rather than expanded by marriage. Ask the nearest hippie.
An olfactory guide, created to assist you in locating nearby hippies: patchouli, hemp, smoky vanilla bean, and cannabis accord.
(No, there is no actual weed in this perfume, silly.)
Jiggery PokeryAdd to cart
King vs Burwell
The Court’s next bit of interpretive jiggery-pokery involves other parts of the Act that purportedly presuppose the availability of tax credits on both federal and state Exchanges. Ante, at 13–14.
I dunno. “Jiggery Pokery” just felt like it needed a whimsical scent attached to it, so here’s some pink pepper cotton candy with a sliver of orange peel and a hint of vanilla cream.
Looming Spectre of Inutterable HorrorAdd to cart
Arizona vs United States
We are not talking here about a federal law prohibiting the States from regulating bubble-gum advertising, or even the construction of nuclear plants. We are talking about a federal law going to the core of state sovereignty: the power to exclude.
The Court opinion’s looming specter of inutterable horror—“[i]f §3 of the Arizona statute were valid, every State could give itself independent authority to prosecute federal registration violations”—seems to me not so horrible and even less looming.
If securing its territory in this fashion is not within the power of Arizona, we should cease referring to it as a sovereign State.
Wherein Scalia channels Lovecraft: raw frankincense and tobacco absolute with Russian leather, blackened champaca, bitter clove, red patchouli, bourbon vanilla and petitgrain.
Mummeries and Straining-to-be Memorable PassagesAdd to cart
Obergefell vs Hodges
Buried beneath the mummeries and straining-to-be-memorable passages of the opinion is a candid and startling assertion: No matter what it was the People ratified, the Fourteenth Amendment protects those rights that the Judiciary, in its ‘reasoned judgment,’ thinks the Fourteenth Amendment ought to protect.
Rosemary is for remembrance: rosemary water with lavender, blackberry, Italian bergamot, and white musk.
Pure ApplesauceAdd to cart
King vs Burwell
The Court claims that the Act must equate federal and state establishment of Exchanges when it defines a qualified individual as someone who (among other things) lives in the “State that established the Exchange,” 42 U. S. C. §18032(f )(1)(A). Otherwise, the Court says, there would be no qualified individuals on federal Exchanges, contradicting (for example) the provision requiring every Exchange to takethe “ ‘interests of qualified individuals’ ” into accountwhen selecting health plans. Ante, at 11 (quoting §18031(e)(1)(b)). Pure applesauce.
Our applesauce is decidedly impure: mashed apples with sugar and honey, slivered with tobacco tar and black tea.
Limited Edition - A Little Lunacy
Art thou pale for weariness
Of climbing heaven and gazing on the earth,
Among the stars that have a different birth,
And ever changing, like a Joyless eye
That finds no object worth its constancy?
Every month we offer a unique, limited edition lunacy scent, corresponding to the following month’s moon. It is available on the website for 72 hours, and then available once again at the following month’s Will Call.
Worm MoonAdd to cart
Do not smirk as a hearse goes by,
For you may be the next to die.
They wrap you up in a big white sheet
And throw you down six feet deep.
They put you in a big black box,
And cover you up with dirt and rocks.
All goes well for a week or two,
Then things start changing; all is new.
The worms crawl in, the worms crawl out,
The worms play pinochle on your snout.
A big green worm with rolling eyes,
Crawls in your stomach and out your eyes.
Til your blood turns mossy green
And oozes out like Devonshire cream.
Worm Moon marks the season of rains, when the worms scuttle forth, aerating the earth with their movements and enriching the soil by digesting waste in organic material, which creates organic fertilizer. Pink and wriggling globs of grapefruit syrup clotted with congealed moss-green blood, rotting coffin wood spattered with soil, decomposing organic matter, and a gruesome burst of overripe blackberries.