Fragrance is thought of as a luxury product. And there is no denying that we do not need it to live. But it is not meaningless that perfumery is one of the oldest arts in human society, that it touches every known culture and encompasses processes, ingredients, and knowledge that span thousands of years. Apoteker Tepe was founded to explore the roots of fragrance: the mysterious, ambiguous, transcendent quality it has to connect us as humans. It is about reintroducing ancient, rare and unusual raw materials too time consuming, too variable, and too costly for use in mass-produced perfume. It is about creating something truly special because it is rigorously researched, individually sourced, produced by hand, and artfully, proudly inefficient. It is fragrance for the re-enchantment of the world.
Founder, Holladay Penick Saltz, grew up outside Jackson, Mississippi. She graduated from the Rhode Island School of Design and went on to study fashion and material culture at Parsons and The New School before becoming an academic researcher at the Institute of Play, the Institute for the Future of the Book, and later a visiting scholar at New York University. A chance reading of Diane Ackerman’s A Natural History of the Senses reawakened her lifelong fascination with the sense of smell, and she decided to dedicate herself to exploring the ancient, storied history of fragrance and fragrant raw materials. After years of study in the process of formulation and production she was able to train with Le Labo Fragrances in New York City and went on to found Apoteker Tepe in 2014.