Senior Perfumer, Firmenich
From his earliest years, Frank Voelkl has been sensitive to the olfactive world around him. He has vivid memories of his uncle’s farm in the countryside of his native Germany – where pungent barnyard odors like hay and fresh rain first piqued his interest in the scents of nature. Born in Bonn, he spent his childhood and teen years abroad in the Netherlands and France, and his curiosity about the many cultures of Europe informed his growing interest in people of all backgrounds.
Later, his interest in scent deepened. He has strong memories of his mother’s rich, warm chypre fragrances; as a teen in Paris, he remembers the arresting “statement” scents of the ‘80’s that were everywhere as he walked down the city’s streets. It was here that he began wearing fragrances himself, and began to understand what he found special about each one. Appropriately, it was in Paris that Frank first considered becoming a perfumer.
Upon his graduation from ISIPCA, Frank composed his first fragrance — a tiaré flower – which both galvanized his fine fragrance career and was a stunning homage to his Tahitian wife.
His profession satisfies his strong desire to travel, allowing him the privilege of being a contemporary “adventurer”, constantly navigating and discovering the world around him.
Frank especially enjoys his travels to French Polynesia, where its intoxicating air is redolent with the colors and scents of nature in its purest form. He loves the way of life there – “where time seems to stand still….” Frank savors being able to “stop the clock” on arrival in Tahiti, which provides a contrast with the fast pace of his life in New York. It not only rejuvenates him and influences his compositions – it also sparks his spirituality and humanity. These paradisiacal islands – flamboyantly rich in nature and plenitude — are perhaps Frank’s greatest inspiration of all.
Frank carries himself with the quiet, confident charisma of a gentle poet. His relaxed self-awareness is without arrogance – enhanced by a sparkling wit and a wry sense of humor that draws people to him with ease. He loves the freedom of expression that working on niche fragrance projects allows him, but has equal passion, drive and curiosity for the excitement of global projects. Always emotionally invested in his work, he aims to touch people deeply,
awakening in them a genuine desire for his fragrances. Frank tells us, “I believe in creating fragrances that have a true soul. My goal is to craft scents that will evoke a profound emotional connection – with the power to elicit pure, unadulterated happiness.”