La Vierge de Fer by Serge Lutens

Most of you readers who come here often, know how much of a fan I am of the god of perfume, Serge Lutens. Well…

Photo courtesy of Serge Lutens Press Relations

Photo courtesy of Serge Lutens PR

I recently received a press release, one of the most stunning and intriguing press releases I have ever received, for his new scent which is coming out this month of September. It consists of a text, a poem really, written by the-artist-of-all-things that is Mr. Lutens. And an image, of the perfume bottle. I haven’t even smelled it yet, but I know I will find it completely enthralling. Why… Because it inspired this breath-taking piece by the master of sensation and scents :

La Vierge de Fer
Que la lumière soit ! Et l’ombre fut. N’a pas l’âme noire qui veut !
« Je viendrai comme un voleur… » dit le Christ ; en silence assurément et probablement,
de lui, chaussé. S’il veut mériter son titre, le Voleur se devra d’opérer sous l’œil grand ouvert
des propriétaires absents. L’œil ici, n’est pas celui, ténu, qui fixe Caïn dans le regret mais,
d’un autre, qui d’une certaine façon, ferait d’Abel, un complice.
Si les fétiches, idoles et grigris du Musée de l’Homme, à Paris, n’avaient pas rencontré
le XXème siècle, tout un chacun aurait manqué cet incroyable pied de nez à Eros que sont,
Les Demoiselles d’Avignon. « Les Nègres avaient compris que tout ce qui nous entoure est
ennemi », disait à son pinceau, le sorcier Picasso. Qui, si ce n’est un de ceux, décidé à la vie,
par la mort, oserait, desserrer les dents de ce sexe du monde : la peur. Puisqu’elle est le fruit
de nos entrailles, il faudra l’élever.
Afin de cela, ne redoutant pas l’inceste, nous la baiserons. De cette façon, elle enfantera
nos plus beaux monstres. C’est ainsi, un peu rouillés à force d’hésitations, que mes pas ont
rejoint La vierge de fer ; ce lys entre les épines.
Serge Lutens

I took the liberty of translating it into English. I only hope I have been able to stay true to the complex meaning Mr Lutens insterted inbetween and around each and every word. I gasped when I read it. It caught me by surprise, and gave me a tiny glimpse of what must pass through this artist’s mind when he is creating one of his masterpieces…

The Iron Virgin
Let there be light! And the shadows were. Dare not have a dark soul he who wishes!
“I will come as a thief…” said Christ; in silence surely, and most likely,
of him, shod. If he wishes to merit his title, the Thief must operate under the large open eye
of the absent owners. Here, the eye, is not that which, held, stares at Cain with regret but,
another, which in a certain way, would make of Abel, an accomplice.
If the fetishes, idols and grigris of the Musée de l’Homme in Paris, had not crossed paths with
the 20th century, each and every one would have missed that incredible snub of Eros which are,
the Demoiselles d’Avignon. “The Negros have understood that all which surrounds us is
an enemy,” said the sorcerer Picasso to his brush. Whom, if it isn’t one of those, determined for life
by death, who would dare, unlock their teeth from that sex of the world : fear. Because it is the fruit
of our bowels, it must be taken away.
So in that, fearing not incest, we will kiss it. In this way, it will give birth to
our most beautiful monsters. This is how, a little rusty given all my hesitation, that my footsteps
led me to the Iron Virgin; that lily between the thorns.

Serge Lutens

The publicity campaign gives just one line : The religion of iron needed a Virgin and the Virgin, of a lily.

Wow.

The entire thing. Just wow.

Perhaps I am caught up in the raptures of astoundingly great publicity, but, I certainly don’t see publicity like this every day, nor every year! It has so much artistry in it, in every word, even in the punctuation. How can I NOT be caught in its net!?! But, I don’t even know what it has inspired me to do more : buy the perfume, or write poetry. Maybe I will write poetry and delicately spray the papers with this intriguing perfume…

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