Launch of the new “Collections” database of the Osmotheque, last step!

Since January 2022, the teams of the Osmothèque, the International Conservatory of perfumes, have benefited from a new computer tool for the management of the unique collection of perfumes it preserves.

The result of a long term work started almost 1 year ago, and made possible thanks to the patronage of the Per Fumum Endowment Fund, the Osmotheque teams have been able to develop with the SKIN SOFT company a tailor-made tool to manage the Conservatory’s very particular collections: the 5000 perfumes, thousands of rare or disappeared raw materials and bases, and hundreds of objects and documents attached to the Conservatory’s collection are now housed or in the process of being housed within the new database.

 Indeed, if on a certain number of points, this collection is comparable to any other museum-type collection, the perfumes kept at theOsmotheque have particular characteristics that had to be taken into account in this database: The existence of several references present in the cellar for the same perfume, location of the quantity in stock, follow-up and qualitative evolution of these stocks, perfumes in the process of being reweigh, internally or externally…

Moreover, It was  necessary to be able to add to this database additional data that until now had not been present in the cellar database: media, bibliographies, notes and testimonials, bottles, etc.

This change of scale, with the transfer of the old database to this new interface, illustrates the change that the Osmotheque is in the process of making: moving from a relatively basic management of its database, reserved for internal teams, to a more ambitious dimension geared towards external uses.

It illustrates the Conservatoire’s desire to enhance the value of its collection, to position itself among the leading cultural institutions, and to manage this collection using methods and processes similar to those used for works held in museums. More ergonomic, more complete, and more secure, this new database anchors the Osmotheque collection at the heart of the Conservatory’s future developments.

About thirty fields are associated with each perfume referenced in the collection, to which are added visuals; this could serve the needs of conferences or exhibitions. 

Initially reserved for the use of osmothecaries, this new tool will be accessible to researchers, starting with those of the Osmotheque’s Scientific Committee, and then to the entire community of researchers wishing to access the information and archives of the Osmotheque. 

In spite of this tremendous progress, the Osmotheque teams are aware that there is still a colossal amount of work to be done, as this entire database must now be documented and 30 years of archives collected at the Osmotheque must be added! 

Credit Osmothèque, International Perfume Conservatory
Credit Osmothèque, International Perfume Conservatory

“With this new tool, the management of the Osmotheque’s perfume collection will gain on several aspects: more ergonomic, more exhaustive, more secure, and allowing, thanks to clean and standardized descriptive fields, to make the different segments of the Osmotheque’s collection communicate with each other (books / internal archives / bottles / advertisements…). The database will also be more secure, both in terms of access and in terms of back-up “. 

Anne-Cécile Pouant, Executive manager, International Conservatory of Perfumes.

“This change of reference system at the Osmotheque is also the sign of an achievement: the collection started 30 years ago with a first perfume, then a dozen, and almost 5000 to date, illustrates the tremendous development of the Osmotheque, which has been the precursor of the preservation of this evanescent and fragile heritage that is perfume.”

Thomas Fontaine, President of the Osmothèque, International Conservatory of Perfumes.

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