Ofrenda takes place as an improvised ritual offering at a pre-historic rock shelter in the Parque Natural de Sierra María-Los Vélez, Spain. The cave’s location, atop a mountain and several meters wide, is only known to a few local shepherds who occasionally use it as temporary shelter. Its walls feature a small, magical, unmapped rock art figure depicting a human figure raising their arms in prayer. Today, the cave doubles as home to wild ibexes and vultures who inhabit these mountains. After a 2 hours hike with other resident artists, we reached the cave, where I carefully placed eight sculptures inside at the deepest end. The offering was recorded through analogue & digital photographs as well as with multiple detailed 3D scans, opening the possibility for the ritual to be replicated endlessly on a virtual realm. Made in unfired white clay and esparto grass, the vessels depict local landscape, flora and fauna together with votive figures: sentinels of local spirits and deities, expressions of an ancestral knowledge that is real and imaginary at the same time.
Offerings 3D scans at JOYA
Unfired clay, esparto.
Panoramic views from the rock shelter, undisclosed location, Parque Natural de Sierra María-Los Vélez, Spain.
On-site photographs of the offerings
Offerings 3D scans at the cave, undisclosed location, Parque Natural de Sierra María-Los Vélez, Spain.
Photo: Simon Beckmann
With the generous support of the S&R Foundation.
This project started as a 4 weeks residency at JOYA: AiR. My gratitude goes to Simon and Donna and all resident artists for their hospitality and support during this time.