Bourreau des Fleurs 2017

Bourreau des Fleurs by Serge Lutens
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8.1 / 10 31 Ratings
According to EssenceVitae Research Team Bourreau des Fleurs is a popular perfume by Serge Lutens for women and men and was released in 2017. Furthermore The scent is woody-spicy. The longevity is above-average. It was last marketed by Shiseido Group / Beauté Prestige International.
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Ratings
Scent
8.131 Ratings
Longevity
8.527 Ratings
Sillage
7.828 Ratings
Bottle
8.532 Ratings
Value for money
7.113 Ratings
Submitted by OPomone, last update on 12.04.2024.

Reviews

5 in-depth fragrance descriptions
4
Pricing
6
Bottle
9
Sillage
10
Longevity
8.5
Scent
Gold

541 Reviews
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Gold
Gold
Top Review 51  
Serge Lutens Search
For this commentary, I use a text written by Serge Lutens himself for underpinning and explanation. It is entitled "Monde arabe" and can be found in the book "Les Parfumeurs: Dans l'intimité de grands créateurs de parfum", Harper-Collins, 2018.
Unfortunately, since no German translation is available yet, I'm doing the job myself. Here I am largely dispensing with the original quotations in French, because this would make the commentary unnecessarily cumbersome. Anyone who understands French and is interested in perfume should pick up the above book. It is a fantastic source of first-hand information. This is because it is not narrated by a blogger or conjectured by a perfume critic, it is always the perfumer himself/herself speaking.

I don't know what facts of Lutens' life you already know, so forgive me if I bore you with some biographical info that was new to me personally. Because, in fact, I didn't know that Lutens grew up in Lille in the north of France and had his first experience with the world of cosmetics in a hair salon, picking up hairpins off the floor and sweeping them. He does not reveal in his text how he then came from Lille to Dior in 1968. In 1980 he joined Shiseido as stylist and make-up director. There he designed flacons, later he was sent to Firmenich for further training, where he received a perfumery education that still enables him to create perfumes today. In the 90s there was a crisis between Shiseido and Lutens. He left the group.
In 2000, he opened his own perfume house, the Palais-Royal in Paris.

"Today we count 80 different fragrances among our collection, most but not all of them developed by me together with Christopher Sheldrake, with whom I collaborate during every single stage of the production...sometimes for years. It took us 12 years to make 'Chene,' for example." (p.135)

How long Sheldrake and Lutens sat on "Bourreau des Fleurs" I don't know.
The pyramid initially suggests a simple fragrance. Only three ingredients are mentioned.
That's a good thing I like it when perfume houses do without to come up with extensive information about the ingredients, because then we, the critics (whether professionals or amateur critics like me) can no longer practice in working off and rehearsing the pyramid, but must align our texts differently.

"Bourreau des Fleurs" is a multi-layered, spicy fragrance that leads back to its roots, which Lutens himself describes as an "imaginary landscape in which he spins in circles." At the heart of his work, he places an examination of "the woman" par excellence:
"All these women are the woman, my invented woman, magical, with magical powers. One might think that my imaginary landscape is going round in circles. For the contempt I take revenge. I take revenge on women. I take revenge on the woman herself. My life is a story of revenge. I am the mistake. I make up for it and I make it worse. Because you can't make up for something without making it worse. I love, I seduce, and at the same time I hate and destroy. Without this violence there is no creation." (p.130)

In "BdF", one senses an almost magical herbal hexenaura at the beginning, a brew of various spices already familiar from other creations by the Lutens/Sheldrake duo.
Something "Ambre Sultan" flashes, a little piece of Marrakech, a place that has great significance for Lutens, since his ethnic roots are there, although he grew up in Lille.

"When I discovered Morocco, I knew that the Arab world had not yet been embraced by French society. Hence my choice. To return. To stay.
I was in permanent contradiction with French society and the violence of this new world I discovered suited me. And I haven't changed. I still find myself in contradiction. So I'm still here. That justifies my loneliness, first in Paris, then here, in Marrakech." (p.132)

The licorice herbal spice potion gives way in the heart to a note that I personally usually find problematic in perfumes, but which seems masterfully crafted in "BdF". It is the strawflower.
"If you manage to get past your initial disgust, then things get very interesting. Disgust plays a big part in my way of conceiving the story of a fragrance. The disgust and the words." (p. 131)
"A perfume isn't a single smell after all, it's not a vanilla cake, it's a whole cosmos. That is literature then!"

Just like a literary text, Lutens sees perfume as a fundamental means of artistic expression.
"My intention is to touch people. If perfumery didn't touch anyone, it would be completely uninteresting." (p. 136)

"I'm not interested in happiness. When I open a book about happiness, I close it very quickly. It bores me. I'm not interested in happiness. What I'm interested in is the process of creating. Creating something." (S.137).

The strawflower is called "Immortelle" in French, meaning the immortal. In "BdF" it possibly refers to Lutens' mother, whose first name was Fleurisse. For him, the mother remains a person he could never grasp.
"The psychoanalysts....they've all gone mad because I can't get better. It's impossible. I need this image of a woman who replaced my mother in the beginning...without a woman, I croak."
Maybe that's why the strawflower seems so soft and homey to me, so fitting in "BdF".
But it weakens toward the end, giving way to a light kitchen smell that reminds me not of charred wood but of an oriental stew with herbs.
The flowers, in my perception, were not trampled or broken (as the name suggests), but slowly cooked.

"I need this permanent image of a woman and I keep reinventing it with every perfume and with every name I choose. The names of the perfumes of my house perpetuate a dialogue with this woman...Death is very present in our conversation, but it never has a sad aspect."

Lutens ends his text with a poem, which I quote in the original French text:

La mort, c'est gai, la mort,
c'est aussi une femme.
Une femme qui vient me dire bonjour.
Elle est tres élégante.
Elle est immortelle.
Elle a de beaux jours devant elle.

And now a discussion from a feminist point of view would certainly not be unexciting.... - rarely has a perfumer so clearly and openly declared his basic theme: "Cherchez la femme!"
37 Comments
9
Bottle
8
Sillage
9
Longevity
9.5
Scent
Shaking

20 Reviews
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Shaking
Shaking
Top Review 16  
The heart is a lonely hunter
One in advance the famous disclaimer:
It will be long, it will be exhausting, whether it is worthwhile, but please everyone may decide for themselves.
The comment has only marginally (the basic mood) with my favorite book "The heart is a lonely hunter" zutun..so please do not be surprised.

A fragrance about age, pain , loneliness and the impossibility of love...
and yet loving...

What? Pretty tough stuff will say the gentle reader...why should I spray me something like that on the neck?

Moment Moment slowly...
Why,why, why?

Mr. Lutens late work "Bourreau des Fleurs" can not be considered without "Dent de Lait". (It will follow there vllt. also still a comment..comes time, comes advice)

These 2 fragrances, both launched in 2017, are inseparable in my eyes.
"Bourreau des Fleurs" has, as 'Jersey' wrote in your comments before, different meanings:
Charmer of Love", "Heartbreaker", "Flowerbreaker" and "Executioner of Flowers" ... now this is where it gets interesting.

As Serge Lutens once mentioned, his relationship with his mother is an ambivalent one...a love-hate relationship you could say.
The fragrance text of "Bourreau des Fleurs" in German has been somewhat altered and shifts the context, although this already gives a very good look into the interior of Lutens feelings.

It reads as follows:
A nocturnal sun... violence, imbued with love.
Flattering, sensual, soothing and mystical at the same time

In English, this already sounds a little different:
"The condemned: - Persecutor you slice, but in my blood you're the sap. Executioner: - And you, from my heart, you're the wood."

Lutens wants and always wanted to convey with his fragrances certain emotions in certain situations and for me it is here,with this, clearly about love...

But not the innocent,pure love or the love between man and woman...
It is about the exhausting devotion, the cordoning off, but still about the eternally connected to be...the love becomes something painful and enraptured, something which goes far beyond a striking "I love you" statement!

It is about the love between son and mother...

Does Lutens want to lead his mother olfactory to the scaffold? Does he recognize at the moment of your end the inevitable bond of your two souls?

Interesting here is an excerpt from a written interview from 2014 with Mr. Lutens, which for me can be seen as a blueprint to "Bourreau des Fleurs" and "Dent de Lait". It is about the early childhood memories from the Nazi era and afterwards.

Serge Lutens:
The image of Berlin is very present in my story: the war, Pétain's laws, the German Occupation... My imaginings around this woman who is my mother. What is this? Who is my father? What is this about? Who is she? Who is this woman, who kept quiet all her life? Who died in silence... without telling me anything...
I don't know who my father is, but I don't know who my mother is... I know who my father is, since I didn't love him, but actually, there's a turnaround. Things aren't that simple.

If "Bourreau des Fleurs" represents the end of this process, then "Dent de Lait" is the beginning....The hubris of birth,of childhood...of being "thrown into the world!

Dent de Lait is described in English as follows:
Now weary of the tongue's games which have for weeks on end been loosening its tooth, a young wolf is anxious to move from milk to blood.I have loved you for so long I will never forget you."

To me, this is clearly about the painful process of weaning himself from his mother.

Serge Lutens:
At seven years old, a girl will usually go towards her father... A boy will naturally gravitate towards his mother, that's more or less how the world establishes itself. Now, when you choose the mother as strongly as I did, of course it's extremely dangerously, because it's an incredible imbalance... The fact of having an adulterous mother, the fact of being a bastard, the fact that my father didn't recognize me, refused to recognize me initially, that he married my mother two years later: she experienced all that, of course, and I experienced it even though I wasn't fully aware of it.
Because an anxious mother, that's an anxious child. So this choice, if you will, that we make of one being or another at the outset of our lives, because deep down there's only one choice, though we don't know it's a choice... Because you're a child, you don't understand you're choosing. You don't call it a choice. What's a choice, anyway? I'll tell you: in fact, you're being stalked by wild beasts, there's a flooded river in front of you and on the other side, there's a quiet shore. What do you do? You cross the flooded river anyway.

Lutens, a driven soul, restless but with an incredible will and a sense of the moment, be it painful or beautiful.

"Bourreau des Fleurs" is for me Lutens conciliatory end of a long journey..towards forgiveness and his own accept his self.
Precisely because of this, the fragrance acts like a "best of" Lutens.

He lets us participate once again in the stations of his life.

The fragrance contains traces of ripe plums as in "Bois et fruits", a basic spice as in "Arabie" and a smoky component, interwoven with sweetness as from "Fille en aiguilles"

Above all towers the Immortelle, which mixes with all the ingredients, to an almost thick syrup.

This fragrance has something loving,conciliatory...memories of a time of warming sun and comfort ...but also something resinous,charred what bubbles under the surface emerges from time to time.

A cautionary shade - smoky licorice.

Harmony and disharmony lie here very close together, always in battle with each other.
Who may win the upper hand?
I do not know...

But what I think I know is that with this fragrance you get to buy a part of "Lutens self".
It is the artistic attempt of a reappraisal, a "fragrant catharsis"

Whether this is worth 450€ to one, is as with the art in general, superfluous to answer.

From a sober point of view, the price for a "Best of" fragrance is certainly too much.
Here is no surprise, here is no sensational scent progression (there is much to discover, no question)
The sillage and durability are phenomenal with me, which is certainly due to the Immortelle,which, no matter which fragrance I wear, always reacts very well with my skin.

This fragrance is and will always remain for me, a matter of the heart.
As it is now times with the muse art so ...

Art is a "possessive mistress"...which does not always please everyone... but this must not.
9 Comments
10
Bottle
10
Sillage
10
Longevity
10
Scent
Jersey

15 Reviews
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Jersey
Jersey
Very helpful Review 12  
Trilogy - Episode 3: Longing for love
Thanks to EssenceVitae, it happened that a wish came true all at once, when suddenly 3 fragrances from Serge Lutens' Section d'Or series arrived at my home. I'll start with fragrance no. 3 Bourreau des Fleurs - which could have several meanings: quite poetic like "charmer of love", a bit dramatic "heartbreaker" or intimidating "flower-breaker" or even "executioner of flowers" - where somewhere I saw a picture with axes - which should perhaps mean unrequited love. The composition only mentions the following: Licorice, strawberries, charred wood. It is also said that Bourreau des Fleurs contains no flowers.

But my nose speaks differently: Bourreau des Fleurs is one of the most beautiful floral fragrances or even belongs to the most beautiful Lutens fragrances. Probably thanks to the amazingly wonderful strawflower scent bathed in the Mediterranean sun. I am impressed by the beauty, delicacy and loving impression of the perfume. I feel happy and my heart rejoices. I remember my childhood, a short time spent together with my dear mother in a summer apartment in the country. In a short time, a light, warm, very pleasant Mediterranean breeze from Corsica or the South of France came into the room through the constantly open windows. I clearly felt a warm embrace from my mother, her hands caressed me and smelled a little sweetly still after the spice from the cake that had just been baked. An incredibly successful scent, lasts a good 8 - 9 hours.
2 Comments
8
Bottle
7
Sillage
8
Longevity
6.5
Scent
StellaDiverF

213 Reviews
StellaDiverF
StellaDiverF
Top Review 9  
Expensive Immortelle Soliflore
Bourreau des Fleurs is advertised as heavily revolving around immortelle, and that's exactly what I got from this new Section d'Or offering. Upon spraying, the immortelle immediately jumps out with its sweet, maple syrup-related aspects. Decadent dried fruits are drenched in unctuous, golden honey, then get reduced and caramelised, until the dried fruits look like being preserved in amber.

This might sound like a nightmare of gooey molasses, but that's not the case on my skin, as the sweetness feels ambered and are in a lower octave than pure sugar fest. Moreover, if inspected closely, there's a subtle, underlying woody bitterness effectively anchoring the rich sweetness, which might be the doing of licorice and the smoky woody elements.

Bourreau des Fleurs behaves largely in a linear manner and is dominated by this lavish sweetness of immortelle. At around 90 minutes in, the spicy cumin aspect of immortelle suddenly makes a surge and then looms at the periphery, completing the olfactory profile of immortelle. Towards the later dry down, Bourreau des Fleurs sometimes makes me think of an almost resinous honey tobacco, but it eventually feels more like an illusion of immortelle.

The fragrance has a heavy to moderate projection, and lasts comfortably for 9 hours.

I quite enjoy Bourreau des Fleurs for its many facets of immortelle, especially its rich, ambered sweetness. However, the elephant in the room is, without surprise, its price and limited distribution. Personally, I'm not more impressed by Bourreau des Fleurs than other wonderful immortelle-centric fragrances such as Annick Goutal Sables, Lutens' own El Attarine, or Pierre Guillaume Fareb, etc. I would recommend it to those who are looking for an immortelle soliflore, or a generally resinous honey tobacco fragrance, but there are surely other ineresting and more affordable choices out there.
0 Comments
7
Pricing
9
Bottle
8
Sillage
9
Longevity
8.5
Scent
DenisGrails

6 Reviews
DenisGrails
DenisGrails
3  
LOVE AND HATE Relationship
The first perfume that i've bought from SECTION D'OR Line , and definitely NOT the last !
I think to believe , that this line is aimed to attract people , that are looking for something else , different , artistic and unique ! Creativity to the maximum , and as already metioned from the brand "taking an idea to its very limits"....
I get a lot of Immortelle with this one , a hint of something sweet and syrupy , but at the same time ,also something bitter and resiness ! Indeed , there are some smoky facets ,that i get too , although , on my skin they feel quite light and transparent ! It ain't something dark and mysterious (of how i personally get with Serge Noire ) , but more of that love and hate relationship between Serge and his mother , that feels very nostalgic and sentimental , pleasent in kind of way , but painful in another !
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Statements

2 short views on the fragrance
Japarfumo21Jaessencevitae21 2 years ago
9
Bottle
5
Sillage
8
Longevity
9.5
Scent
Deep Oriental, avant-garde, artistic, nostalgic
0 Comments
BoBoChampBoBoChamp 3 years ago
8
Sillage
9
Longevity
7.5
Scent
After a salty spicy-sweet opening, this challenging and smoky spicy-floral Winter fragrance, settles to a meaty, smoky earthy-woody base.
0 Comments

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Lily Roux

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