Dec 072012

Andy Tauer and Evelyn Avenue present a drawing for Tauer’s Advent Calendar, your chance to win a handmade soap…

It’s that time of year again. Every day this month, as part of his annual Advent Calendar event, perfumer Andy Tauer offers surprise giveaways through a series of participating blogs. For the draw here on Evelyn Avenue, Tauer has prepared a special tuberose soap. Evelyn Avenue will draw the winner tomorrow night and close the comments by announcing the lucky reader.

It’s also “that time” of year for resolutions: renewals, revisions, reflections – whatever you call them when making your own list of things you didn’t do last year but told yourself you would, or things you see you need to start.

Andy and Evelyn Avenue have been working hard the last year on our two collaborative projects, the Tableau de Parfums fragrance line and its cinematic counterpart, the Woman’s Picture film series. We started in October of 2011 with the release of our first scent, Miriam, and its counterpart film of the same name. Ann Magnuson helped us picture what it means to look at the past with her portrayal of a longtime shopping channel hostess whose life is in crisis, not least because the failing health of her mother brings back memories of her childhood and the fragrance that emblematized their relationship. Last October, we released Loretta, the second Tableau fragrance, and its counterpart film Loretta. During our last draw, conducted to mark that occasion, we screened the first three segments of the Woman’s Picture series on our home page. These include Miriam, Loretta, and Ingrid (which will be released next October). For the Advent draw, we’re again screening the films for a limited time.

It’s been a challenge and a pleasure to explore this material and to share it in various ways. For 2013, Tauer and Evelyn have some new things in mind – combined screenings and perfume events in several US cities, where we’ll be in attendance and offer special take-aways to attendees. One of the most rewarding aspects of our collaboration has been meeting people at launch events, so we want to extend that opportunity to engage and connect. We’ll also continue working on the next film in the series, Only Child, which we filmed last April and expect to premiere later this year. Only Child resumes the story started in Loretta, with Grace Zabriskie playing that character’s compellingly odd mother.

The photo for this post was taken by Melissa Bridgman, a longtime friend to Evelyn Avenue. Melissa lives and works in Memphis, Tennessee making pretty wonderful ceramics out of her home studio. Her work is delicate and rustic, and the origami crane in the photo perfectly captures the spirit of what she does. In Japanese culture, the crane symbolizes good fortune and prosperity. It’s said that whoever makes a thousand origami cranes in a year can make the wish of her choice. That’s a tall order – and a lot of weight for folded pieces of paper to carry – but if anyone can do it, it’s Melissa. She’s decided to hang the cranes along a wooded bike path here in town, where cyclists will find them dangling from tree branches. Like us, she’s looking to connect.

In October, Memphis lost one of its prized treasures, a woman by the name of Papatya Curtis (see our November 6 eulogy on the blog). Bridgman, a close friend of Papatya’s, has seized the New Year, and her kiln, to commemorate our friend in a special, fragile but lasting way. When she first started making these cranes, Melissa wrote:

Three weeks ago today one of my closest friends died. It was sudden, tragic, unforseen, preventable. There has been so much blame and sorrow and support and anguish and for the first time I’m really understanding that you can’t just get up and move on. I’ve always known that death and loss is something you get used to, over time, but not over.¬†After [Papatya] died, I began making these origami-esque cranes out of porcelain. I gave two to her mother and sister, one to her mother in law. I kept one. I folded dozens out of paper the first week after her death, and will fold more. We’ve all heard the story of the thousand cranes and how they represent hopes for peace. My cranes give me a bit of hope- hope to make more, hope to make them better, hope to make them a memorial somehow…

It seems like an apt way to look at moving forward, and it inspires us to think big in similarly small but meaningful ways.

What are your New Year resolutions? Leave us a comment to enter the Tauer advent drawing, telling us the one thing you keep thinking you’d most like to do or accomplish in 2013. For our part, we’ll throw in a DVD of the first three segments of Woman’s Picture.

This draw is now closed. The winner of the draw was Alica. Congratulations!

 Posted by on December 7, 2012