“For inspiration, I always have to dig, go back to the roots of something,” says French master perfumer Francis Kurkdjian, who began his career with a splash. At age twenty-five, he created Le Mâle, the first men’s fragrance for couturier Jean-Paul Gaultier, to great acclaim. Introduced in 1995, the legendary best seller has been making waves ever since. So has its creator. “It was my first ever perfume,” recounts the now celebrated perfumer, whose scores of successful scents include those for many major fashion brands — Dior, Elie Saab, Armani, Kenzo, and Yves Saint Laurent. His own irresistibly singular fragrance brands — like Aqua Vitae — are especially sought after.
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PHOTOGRAPHY BY N. BAETENS
WRITTEN BY JEAN BOND RAFFERTY
This story appeared in the Fall 2016 issue of MILIEU.
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