Lola Karimova-Tillyaeva’s awareness of the environment: The Droplet
Lola Karimova-Tillyaeva has a profound concern for the environment. Since 2017, she has been working to raise awareness, alongside her husband, businessman Timur Tillyaev, about the great challenge posed by water scarcity. Realising how difficult it can be to reach a global audience in these days of media saturation, Lola Tillyaeva chose an innovative approach – she would turn to art. As she puts it: “I believe that art has an incredible capacity to inspire, encourage and unite people around a cause, due to its ability to touch the human soul. That is why we harness the power of art as a means to raise public awareness of issues relating to global warming and climate change.”
The Droplet is a free-standing art installation of gleaming polished aluminium tubing. Fully 12 metres from top to bottom, it bulges to six meters at the base. A stylised droplet of water designed to shroud itself in a fine vapour mist – it operates as “a unique multisensory art installation”. It’s also a guaranteed attention grabber. Created and conceived by artist Marcos Lutyens and fabricator Scott Froschauer from the Institute for Art and Olfaction, it never fails to get people talking anywhere it’s displayed – which, after-all, is the whole point. As Lola Karimova-Tillyaeva says: “By engaging the participants through sound, smell and touch as well as visually, The Droplet naturally opens the way for discussions on water conservation and management.”
Lola Tillyaeva has a special affinity with water. Her maison de parfum, The Harmonist, is inspired by Feng Shui and its philosophy of harmonising the energy of the Earth’s five elements. The way she operates The Harmonist also exemplifies her concern for our planet. Her insistence of minimising her business’s ecological footprint is one good example of this. Lola Karimova-Tillyaeva decided to use “recyclable materials at every possible touchpoint, from perfume bottles and deluxe packaging to the vegetal wax candles.” She also makes refills available for every product in her range to reduce the amount of packaging. Practices such as these demonstrate that concern for the environment need not come at the cost of best practice.
Water scarcity is an issue which even the UN takes very seriously. One reason for this is that its impacts affect every continent on Earth and the situation is worsening: “Some regions are even reaching the limit at which water services can be sustainably delivered.” Armed conflict is one further risk associated with this issue, also known as ‘water conflicts’, they are a growing challenge to international relations.
Unveiled at a glamorous event in Paris, The Droplet is due to visit other European cities such as Barcelona. As Lola Karimova-Tillyaeva foresaw, the installation has proved an absolute showstopper. At every stop it stimulates debate and inspires action. A graceful, eye-pleasing way to open minds and inspire change. It’s a marvellous example of Lola and Timur “respecting the environment with every nuance of their activity”.
The editorial unit