for immediate release  


Durk Dehner, President of Tom of Finland Foundation (ToFF), Los Angeles, California, has confirmed plans to enter into an exclusive first licensing agreement for the development of an original signature fragrance line of products with Etienne de Swardt, Founder and President of Etat Libre d’Orange. A special grouping of Tom’s original artwork is being curated for presentation on May 8th at the ToFF Gallery, 1421 Laveta Terrace, Los Angeles California.

Etienne de Swardt brings more than twelve years of expertise in the worldwide perfume and cosmetic industry, including seven years as VP of Marketing, at Givenchy Perfumes. Additionally, he is the Founder and President of the Paris based house of perfumes, Editions de Sens (SAS) who’s products are distributed in such prestigious department stores as Henri Bendel New York.

On May 8th Etienne de Swardt and associates; Jean Claude Magret fashion and textile consultant, Jean-Marc Dimanche, packaging and design consultant, will be in Los Angeles, to surround themselves with Tom of Finland’s original works, in pursuit of creating a scent that will reflect the philosophy of Etat Libre d’Orange since its inception, “a land of olfactory liberality and eroticism where imagination, personal fantasy and insubordination reign supreme”.

“A subversive and playful territory of expression, free from censor and taboo, an enticement to wear sexuality like a second skin”.

The Etat Libre d’Orange brand of fragrance is formulated with the finest ingredients and developed by the top perfumers of the industry through partnerships with Givaudan. Further details may be found on their websites.

Durk Dehner, founder and director of the Tom of Finland Foundation, has for over the past two decades been similarly aligned to non-censorship with its commitment to its mission statement of being "Dedicated to Protecting, Preserving, and Promoting Erotic Art."

Jean Claude Magret, consultant and mutual friend of both men, introduced Durk Dehner and Etienne de Swardt. Jean Claude surmised that Etienne’s company would be a good match for the exploration of a Tom of Finland signature fragrance. Durk realized, "We both held a deep respect for Tom 's amazing talent to create without compromise."

January 2007 New York: Etienne introduced Durk to one of the world’s leading “noses” (one who creates scents from combining essences) at Givaudan Paris / New York. The nose provided a canvas to explore “many different directions that are possible in finding a scent that is the essence of Tom of Finland.”

It was also at this time, through the exploration of Tom’s drawings, that we agreed that his works brought out a sense of pride, pleasure, and happiness. This was the first spark that embarked us on the quest to discover the Tom of Finland scent.

In 2006 the Judith Rothschild Foundation, under the direction of Trustee Harvey Shipley Miller acquired five of Tom’s original works for inclusion in an offering to New York’s MOMA where they were subsequently accepted, and have taken their place in the permanent collection of definitive Twentieth Century drawings.

Harvey stated at a fundraiser in 2006 that Tom of Finland was one of the most influential artists of the last century. As an artist he was superb, but as an influence he was transcendent. Tom of Finland was the path for this whole generation of artists. Harvey went on to state that few artists do masterworks and that Tom of Finland was indeed one of those such artists.

Tom’s work was accepted into the Los Angeles County Museum of Art in 1997 and exhibited in the next year in Master Drawings, an exhibition from the museum’s permanent collection. Tom of Finland hung between David Hockney and Matisse. Tom is also included in such permanent collections as the Chicago Institute of Arts, the Portland Museum of Art in Portland, Oregon, Museum of Contemporary Art, and The Kiasma in Helsinki, Finland. A complete listing of Tom's exhibitions is available here.

The ToFF Permanent Collection includes more than 2,500 original works, of which 1,500 were done by Tom. In addition, its depository contains more than 500,000 images, documents, and memorabilia of thousands of artists. Together, it comprises the world’s largest erotic arts archive.

The Foundation has published three print retrospectives of Tom’s work — the most recent contains a forward by former Whitney Museum curator, Richard Marshall. German publisher Taschen Verlag has published several books dedicated to Tom’s art, and is currently working with the Foundation to producing the most complete book to date on the works of Tom of Finland.

The Tom of Finland Foundation, operates as a 501(c)(3), nonprofit, tax-exempt organization, it was created in 1984 by Touko Laaksonen, aka Tom of Finland (1920-1991), and Durk Dehner.

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Press Contact: Dino DeMarco
Phone: 213.250.1685

May 1, 2007

T o m   o f   F i n l a n d   F o u n d a t i o n

over two decades of dedication to
protecting, preserving and promoting erotic art


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