Kate McLean is an artist and designer, mapper of urban smellscapes and PhD candidate at the Royal College of Art, UK. Her research interests are the practices of detecting and communicating fine-grained, human-centred, qualitative olfactory perceptions of cities worldwide. She runs sensory workshops and smellwalks with non-profit organisations, arts and humanities festivals, urban planners and education. Recent projects include public art programming with Mapamundistas Visual Arts festival in Pamplona, and the New York City Department of Transportation and The Future of Storytelling exploring ephemeral cartographies. Work underway includes a commission from MAIF Social Club in Paris to relate olfactory perceptions of the Marais district, and sensory workshops at Kew Gardens in London.
Her co-edited book, ‘Designing with Smell’ published by Routledge, covers contemporary practices, techniques and challenges of working with smell and smells. As an early career researcher McLean has written for the Guardian newspaper and published in Leonardo. She is Programme Director of Graphic Design at Canterbury Christ Church University, UK in the department of Media, Art and Design.