There is no better place on earth to become one with yourself than the bathtub. So much that you never wish to get out. Or get back in as soon as possible. At least that’s how I feel. I take a bath every day. Sometimes even two. Starting your day with a full bath is so different than jumping into the shower. Win- ding down in a full bath at the end of the day is so different from going straight to bed and falling asleep. Bathtub: it’s a transition zone between night and day; it’s an interface of different states. But most of all it’s a place for becoming-one-with-yourself, a moment where hard edges dissolve. Home – for me it isn’t the four walls of an apartment; Instead home is: Your own body slipping into the warm water of a tub, where ever that tub may be. Tub – shell, not prison; tub – cocoon, not box; body enveloped by water, enveloped by a tub – that’s me with myself.
Looking at Sophie Reinhold’s paintings – I believe to recognize bathtubs. That is the oval, rounded, and sometimes kidney-formed shapes appear as such. I imagine these forms to be the paintings’ dormant power centers, and that the other elements in them, in all there disparateness, seem to self-evidently concur: the abstract and angular shapes, the free-hand lines, the figurative elements – naked man, naked woman, breast and dick.
Bathtub or shower – it’s a frame of mind. It makes all the difference. A shower is shock; a bathtub is acceptance. Bathtub means: the will for water as a state and outlook – flexible and open, yet always self-contained; hovering and gliding, but always one with itself. Not the language of exclusivity, but that of intensity. Intensity is something that simultaneously binds and opens: the manifestation of concentrated overflowing, the moment of being one-with-yourself in more-than-one. To become one with yourself means: to open yourself to the day, the world, to others. This isn’t only true for bathtubs, it’s the same for images, the same for paintings (the same for these images, the same for these paintings): You can glide into them; you can almost physically sink into them and find yourself in them, in others. Diving into the world, facing it. Believe it or not. I do.
Dominikus Müller, 2017