Niki de Saint Phalle's eponymous scent, Niki de Saint Phalle eau de toilette, is much the same arresting affair both in looks (the cobalt blue oval with the intertwining snakes) and in smell.
It feels like one steps into an immense pine forest in a day of frost, when the needles hang with snow on them. The snow feels like dry powder and soap, very starched and proper, like some aldehydic fragrances of the 1970s, but with that green bitter touch of wormwood-mossy quality and a dose of carnation, which makes it more mysterious than just a bon chic bon genre aldehydic floral.
In what concerns hardcore chypres Niki de Saint Phalle is an odd man (woman) out. It's artsy yet not too hard to wear, with a playful twist that recalls violet candy, less herbal or animalic than most chypres, a hint of leather, some temptation, some tongue-in-cheek. It's a bit like stepping into a university library only to be greeted by a giant snake sculpture that looms above your head in insatiable hunger.
Related reading on PerfumeShrine:
The Chypre Series: history, culture and aesthetics
Chypre Fragrances Explained for Newbies