The time is wow

Thomas Vanz für Bowmore

Nicht alles ist besser, wenn es jung ist – Eine gewisse Reife bringt ja oft auch Stil und Geschmackssicherheit mit sich. Zumindest beim Whisky. Alter spielt hier schon eine Rolle, denn je länger ein edler Tropen lagert, desto kostbarer wird er.
Einer, der das ideale Alter erreicht hat, ist Bowmore Timeless 27 Jahre – der Name ist Programm (gewesen). Der Single Malt Whisky vereint Noten von frischem Leder, Tabak und Bienenwachs nach Jahren in Sherry und Bourbonfässern und erreicht eine neue Dimension an Geschmack.
Das Reife-Phänomen hat der französische Regisseur Thomas Vanz, der sonst kosmische Filme als Kunstprojekte oder für Marken wie Dior schafft, visualisiert.

How did you start your art and what drew you to the galaxy?

I was always wondering about the cosmos, thrilled by mystery, amazed by the new discoveries and pictures from the Hubble telescope. I realised that I never really saw an aesthetic representation of a supernova that is the death of a star, and an amazingly beautiful phenomenon, and decided to make a film about it called « Novae ».  A few weeks after the release day, I noticed a growing interest and decided to make more films about the universe, always using the same process of practical FX, liquids and inks instead of CGI.

Why do you think are we so fascinated with space and the universe? 

I think that interest in mysteries, which is mainly why we are fascinated with the cosmos, feeds the imagination, helps people to dream and wonder about the existential questions, such as are we alone in the Universe, what is God, what is our purpose if we have one?
I think those questions will never stop obsessing us, even if we’ll never have the answers.

How did you start working on the theme of whisky?

I started being interested in whisky when Bowmore approached me to collaborate on their new Timeless series. At the time I was thrilled by the offer and realised that I could link the craft of the beverage with my processes of using liquids and alcohol in order to represent the cosmos, with the same attention to detail and precision.

Are there any parallels in enjoying a whisky and exploring the universe?

The plot linked the craft of the scotch to the big-bang, as it took root way back in time in the ground of Islay (the island where the whiskey is made) and the peat there is the result of billions of years of slow chemical reactions, minerals and sediment. And then the process of aging, that brings even more chemical reactions to the final result, final taste of Timeless. My goal was to represent those millions of years in a sort of gigantic timelapse.

If the universe had a taste – what would it taste like? 

Once I worked with a perfumer who asked an astronaut to describe the smell of his spacesuit after an EVA (for Extra- Vehicular Activity) in order to get an idea of the void’s smell. He said it had the taste of burned metal.


Born in 1991, Thomas Vanz is a French director who started making films in 2014, telling tales of the cosmos’s history by producing only practical FX with inks, pigments and many others chemical products.

Focused on the macroscopic aspect, he first illustrated a Supernova, blending art and science with his first short “Novae” in 2016. The film was awarded first prize at the quantum festival.

In 2017, his second film “Intra” went further by describing the “infernal journey” of falling into a black hole, with a visualisation of what a spinning black hole might look like and an aesthetic vision of the white-hole theory.

He has now directed “Bright Side”, the second clip by the talented composer Darius for his new album “Utopia”, focusing on what the birth of light would look like, and how brightness is defeating night in the cosmos.

In 2019, Atelier Des Lumières, the first immersive museum based in Paris, asked him to create a unique piece in a 270° format called “Verse”, which was broadcast for one year to thousands of visitors.

Was sind  schon drei Minuten im Vergleich zu 27 Jahren? Die wenigen Minuten braucht der schottische Single Malt Whisky, um sich optimal zu entfalten – die Sanduhr gibt die Zeit vor.

April 16, 2021
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