Heribert Friedl – No Title (Made for Admont), 2007
Scent coating on boards, various dimensions
In 2007, Admont Abbey Museum was the venue for the exhibition "I feel something you can’t see – Sensing art". The work contributed by Heribert Friedl took the form of a subtle intervention in the library hall of Admont Abbey.
At the time, the library was still undergoing restoration although it remained accessible for visitors. The artist mounted the coated boards he had created on the scaffolding there in a concept that was reduced to the essentials so that it conformed to the construction site conditions in the library. The intention was also to ensure that the installation attracted as little visual attention as possible.
Heribert Friedl consistently and deliberately downplays optical effects in his works. Here, he was more concerned with what the visitors could smell ‒ the odour to which they were exposed ‒ rather than with what they could see. The mounted ‘blank’ boards were coated with an aromatic substance the scent of which was released when they were scratched.
Also provided as part of the installation were scratch-n-sniff cards with a printed scent on their gold-coloured side. The gold colour made reference to the location of the installation ‒ the Baroque Abbey library. The cards were designed so the scent would remind visitors of the work itself while the gold colour would invoke the effect of the magnificent room ‒ visitors were thus able to take a little bit of the original home with them. The odour used was that of incense.