Interview Alex Lee – alumnus of the class 2008 sponsored by Payan Bertrand

By: Communication | 4 May 2020
Presentation & career:
“Hello! I am Alex Lee, originally from sunny California. I am proud to be part of the 2008 class of the Grasse Institute of Perfumery. I joined MANE via its internal perfumery school in 2011 and am now a fine fragrance perfumer for MANE in Paris.” 
Would like to share your current projects??
“What is special about being a perfumer at MANE is that the company values the sharing of expertise and projects between the different creative centers all over the world. I am currently busy working on local (Europe and Middle East) projects and other projects on an international level, notably collaborations with local Chinese brands.” 
How do you imagine your career in 5 years?
“Once you become a perfumer, you do not want to get out of the industry! I aim to be a more consistent perfumer with more experience, working in locations with innovative perfumery projects and with people who believe in my creativity.” 
Concerning the GIP, why did you want to be a part of this adventure? Could you explain the impact of the GIP on your both professional and personal life? 

“Natural raw materials and harnessing them is the foundation of perfume creation, even as we see an increased use of aroma chemicals in the industry. I knew it was important to start at the cradle of perfumery: Grasse, where there is an expertise in and abundance of natural ingredients. Starting my perfumery education at GIP was the obvious choice. 


I will never forget the visit to the rose fields in Grasse and fragrance company visits with GIP. Seeing the harvest, the manual labor involved, and the extraction process made me respect the raw material even more and natural ingredients in general. 


GIP helped me make my dream of being a perfumer into a reality. GIP sent me on an adventure that led me to discover myself: I have met amazing people, traveled, and learned and discovered new things. I am lucky to wake up each morning and actually want to go to work. I wish this for everyone.” 

Do you have any advice to the current or future students of the school? 
  1. “The perfume industry is tough and, ultimately, it is a test of your patience and how much you want it. Do not be disheartened by the number of closed doors and be persistent in knocking. It only takes one person to believe in you to open that door, and the rest is history, off you go.” 
  2. “You are in the south of France studying perfumery, the coolest art ever! Save the competition after school is finished (the real fight is later down the line) and take time to build your community and network. Have fun, make friends with your classmates from all over the world, and learn from one another. Lastly, your finalschool project will not dictate your professional future. Relax.”
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