Water has a special behavior: It seems to be “free” and formless but in fact it is adaptive, its shape depends on external factors, other objects. I associated this phenomenon to mental processes. I connected the path of the water to the confused human mind.
The bathing ritual appears in Sylvia’s novel, as her main character’s important way of purgation. She says bathing is like touching the holy water or being in the uterus as an innocent embryo.
When I was analyzing the bathroom habits I separated showering from bathing. Showering is a practical thing, it is also about washing, but on a basic level that people do everyday - to meet standards. It could symbolize the human mental state in everyday life. If I observe the shape of the water when it comes from the showerhead, I realise that it also correlates with the emotional aspect of the process: there are a lot of parallel but also slightly divergent water jets, they are a little chaotic, and moving fast. There is no time for thinking, only the routine self-reflection, the “autopilot” is working. In contrast bathing is about recreation, and there is only one water jet. It is like a lot of little jets would be merged into one calm, balanced beam. But how do we get from one state to another? By a third “external factor”, an interrupter that makes bigger waves in us than simple routines. It leads us to a higher level of self-reflection, introspection.
It could be a bell jar. A bell jar that you look into, and at first you can’t recognize the difference from everyday life (the water of showerhead), but as the situation is escalating the water is gathering up, which can lead to suffocation. However, if you open the bell jar, the accumulated water may leave, which can lead to a concentrated and more balanced state (bathing).
Another significant aspect of the novel is about female sexuality and gender roles. My resolution on this is that I have tried to balance the otherwise phallic faucet, to make it more feminine.
Special thanks for Sara Viemann Gabor Bella, Benedek Bella and Rebeka Hevesi
2014 - 2019