YOU PARA | DISO: it’s the end of the world as we know it

PARADISO ICK by Alessandro GualtieriDear reader if you are reading this post you have survived the end of the world. Congratulations and welcome to the New World! If however you are not here what better way to embrace your destiny than by wearing YOU  PARA | DISO (sic), a perfume constructed by Alessandro Gualtieri under the creative guidance of Emio Greco and Pieter C. Scholten, directors of ICK (International Choreographic Arts Centre Amsterdam). A perfume conceived and created to capture the essence of Paradise in a bottle. The obvious question is: does it succeed? And of course the obvious answer is: ask me tomorrow, on December 22, when we will all find ourselves either in Paradise or Hell. Till then no one will have been able to tell us what Paradise smells like. If you happen to end up on the hot side of the fence you will just have to take my word for it.

YOU  PARA | DISO is unmistakably a Gualtieri creation. It has the familiar thick but bright texture of Nasomatto perfumes. It is a closely knit composition without traditional topnotes. My first impression is of honey and leather with both ingredients being very refined. The honey is very sweet but also acerbic, like the taste of real honey that has a slight sting in the throat. And the leather is elegant and sweet-tempered in the genre of  Tuscany Leather. Incense creates a juxtaposition of a high pitched note over the bed of sticky leather. A vague spice element is also there, reminiscent of oriental spice mixes, with a hint of cumin but nothing rude or monstrous. I can almost pick a hint of a florality  but the intricacy of the composition (and my limited abilities) does not allow me to interpret it further.

Like all Gualtieri creations, YOU  PARA | DISO is fairly linear but delivers a lot up front. It creates the illusion of floating inside the notes and one can focus on different levels of the composition and isolate what they like. There is a clear bass note humming in the voice of leather, a high-pitched spice and incense and everything swirls in violin notes from honey. As with all Nasomatto fragrances the mix feels like a game of beads connected with strings: nothing is fixed and everything floats around coming in and out of focus. Although this is definitely a strong perfume it never becomes loud. The extrait de parfum concentration helps a lot to maintain the strength close to the skin, a quality usually found in oil based perfumes. Many hours after the initial application the composition turns a little sweeter and woodier, more dense and round and the individual instruments of the orchestra are more difficult to isolate. YOU  PARA | DISO will stay on your skin for hours and hours and will be there the morning after as a light but clear memory of the scent. So, is this what Paradise smells like? If yes, Paradise is an opulent, sensual place with narcotic sweetness and dark seduction. The serenity YOU  PARA | DISO imbues brings more to mind the narcotic numbness of Black Afgano than the calmness of Silver Musk.

YOU  PARA | DISO was the olfactory counterpart of the synonymous dance production of ICK and you can enjoy a short trailer of the piece here

The spirit of the performance is captured in the mysterious sensuality of the scent. Artists Joost van Bleiswijk and Kiki van Eijck designed a spectacular small bottle  levitating in the arms of a metal construction, almost non-existent when viewed from the front but quite substantial from the side. The box was designed by Brown Cartonnages and includes a magazine-guide to the performance following the tradition of the dance company. YOU  PARA | DISO is only available through the online shop of the official ICK site, not through Nasomatto, and if you are a fan of Gualtieri you may consider buying this because the 30ml bottle is considerably cheaper than the rest of his creations and the bottle is simply unique! I bought my bottle from SKINS in Amsterdam and at the time it was shown as the last available bottle of a limited series.

magazine cover – click image for photo source

Official notes: traditionally Alessandro Gualtieri does not issue official notes


Notes from my nose: leather, honey, incense, spices

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MemoryOfScent by Christos is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

About Christos

Scientifically minded but obsessed with the subjective aspect of things. Photos copyright of MemoryOfScent, with special thanks to Pantelis Makkas You are welcome to link to my blog but you are definitely not allowed to copy text or use the photos without my permission. All text and main photos are originals and property of MemoryOfScent All perfumes are from my collection unless stated otherwise.


  1. Well, Christos, we made it! Our world keeps on spinning … yay!

    And leather, honey, spices and a very unique perfume bottle does add up to my idea of Paradise. It’s the kind of thing that really makes a person glad the world didn’t end. 🙂

    If I don’t talk to you before the holiday, here’s wishing you a happy name day and…

    Kalá Christoúgenna! (Yes, I’ve been waiting to say that to you … that’s how dorky I am). 🙂

  2. Irina

    wishing you a Merry Christmas and all the very best for 2013

  3. Christos, sweetling … where the heck are you? I hope you’re just taking a break and not dealing with a winter cold or anything. Miss you. Please come out and play soon! 🙂

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