Week in Review 2019 – 06/21

Background for Bathtub Vortex

What’s in a name? Juliet opines “a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.” Yet the naming of an art work often feels daunting. It isn’t unusual for me to name and rename a piece several times during its making. Most names come to me when I am writing my morning pages. So it is with the latest incarnation for my water piece, now known as Bathtub Vortex.

I’m experimenting with ways to stay 2D, but dip my toe into a more 3D feel. Thus some sections of Bathtub Vortex have more layers of batting than others.

Where does Bathtub Vortex come from? It is an homage to my father. He was a professor of mechanical engineering, specializing in surface tension and fluid dynamics. One of his sabbaticals focused on proving the bathtub vortex theory. The vortex is the direction the mini cyclone swirls when the bathtub is drained. Theoretically, it spins in the direction the earth spins, or clockwise in the northern hemisphere and counter-clockwise in the southern hemisphere. In order to prove this, there needs to be no interference of air current or water current. It had been proven in the northern hemisphere. My father proved it in the southern hemisphere.

Other than the finish work (facing, hanging corners and label) Bathtub Vortex is done!

What is it like to have a father who was captivated by the mini cyclones in a sink, water drops dancing across a hot frying pan, and water insects literally walking on water? As a child, it could be frustrating. It wasn’t unusual to be brushing one’s teeth and have my father interrupt to watch the way the water was flowing from the tap, when all I wanted to do was spit and rinse. As an adult, looking back, the lesson I learned was to observe the world around me. This is a place where scientists and artists intersect. Another is our drive for experimentation.

What drives you? Do you think the title of an artwork is important and why?

I am linking up with Nina Marie’s Off the Wall Fridays.

By Gwyned Trefethen

I am an artist who uses fabric, thread and miscellany to create designs gifted to me by my imagination.


    1. Your interpretation cracked me up. No, my intention wasn’t to imply I was going down the drain. There are days when I feel like it though. Perhaps it is the subliminal message behind the piece.

  1. Hi Gwyned. I love your piece and the name. It’s great to have a story behind a name and your father sounded fascinating! I often change the name of my piece during and sometimes after having finished it. I just try to stick with one name once I’ve written the final post for it – but I have been known to change my mind….I think that it is the creator’s prerogative 🙂

    1. My father was unique. The epitome of the absent minded professor. Funny how titles change as a piece reveals itself. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

Comments are closed.