In an age of touchscreen devices and virtual reality headsets, it’s not too often when contemporary design looks back towards the Ice Age for inspiration – however London-based artist and designer Kentaro Yamada is anything but conventional.

Previously, Yamada has created everything from an upside-down frozen aluminum pyramid to a software-generated sound installation that translates goldfish movement into instrumental sounds.

More recently, the artist has created a “Neanderthal Perfume” that imagines what would have happened if Neanderthals continued to thrive in a day and age of highly-aestheticized products including top-shelf perfumes. Although conceptually the product plays a joke on what we can imagine were poor hygiene habits, it is the package design of the bottle that comes off as the most striking feature.

To create the design, Yamada collaborated with a knapping master to create a hand-axe form using the same crafting methods done during the Paleolithic era that would be used as the final bottle design:

Once the form was completed, Yamada traveled to a porcelain craftsman in Portugal who then created a slip cast of the bottle.

During this time, Yamada worked with a Scottish perfumer to imagine a scent for “the contemporary Neanderthal” that was “modern in its composition, but subtly hints at our ancient, often forgotten relatives”:

02Flint taken from Norfolk flint mine

03Flint knapping

04Flint knapping

05Deer horn is used to fine tune knapping

08Making a plaster model of hand-axe

09Making a plaster model of hand-axe

10Shape is reworked

12After slipcasting they are fettled

13 Ready to be fired for the first bisque

14 Highest firing is done at 1400 degrees C

07 Final Package Design

Be sure to check out the rest of Yamada’s work by heading over to his site.

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