Beatriz de Rijke
The Sacred Ordinary
curated by
Michele Tiberio per Threes
Guardialfiera (CB), Molise

There where the Biferno valley becomes a lake is Guardialfiera, a millennia-old village that develops around the church of Santa Maria Assunta with its Holy Door. It is a cultural place that for hundreds of years has served as a magnetic center for inhabitants and outsiders alike.
Beatriz de Rijke was inevitably drawn to this place: the exterior of the church holds a collage of stones from various periods, rearranged over the centuries after earthquakes, battles and reconstructions. The decorations, scattered harmoniously and randomly, represent the community's relationship with its profound history, a history I built with symbols and objects, inevitably blending the sacred and the everyday, between pagan symbols and Christian iconography.
Beatriz de Rijke was inspired to make The Sacred Ordinary, a three-part work which focuses on the semantic transformation of everyday objects into witnesses of history, human ties to the eternal. The artist searched for objects and shapes in the public space around the church and recreated them in ceramic to allow for physical and tangible interaction. After she handed them to the inhabitants who made these objects their own by welcoming them into their spaces, a step that adds autonomous interpretation, and that allowed de Rijke to establish a dialogue with the residents: the artist entered their homes guided by these objects and documented their new life chapter photographically.
Through these encounters a selection of the conversations with residents is blended and translated into a musical piece, forming a collective voice that will accompany a transparent resin sculpture that incorporates replicas of the ceramic objects they own.The artwork, inspired by to the Holy Door and the church, is set in an alley and offers two perspectives: one toward the village and its history, the other toward the lush valley, inviting viewers to discover sacredness in everyday objects, witnesses of time.

. Beatriz de Rijke, The Sacred Ordinary - Part 1, 2024. Publications, 21 x 30 cm, 20 pp.
Via Romeo Carlo 10

02. Beatriz de Rijke, The Sacred Ordinary - Part 2 , 2024. Metal, resin, ceramics, colouring powders, glazing, 84 x 119 x 6 cm.
Via Romeo Carlo 10

03. Beatriz de Rijke, The Sacred Ordinary - Part 3, 2024. Sound installation, 60 seconds.
Via Romeo Carlo 10

To explore all sides of an intricate correspondence; where deep historical spirituality, the disregarded mundane, and present-day voices of Guardialfiera playfully meet, has been my personal thrill and pleasure. I hope my work engages, connects, and makes happy.

Beatriz de Rijke (Amsterdam, Paesi Bassi, 1991), known in the music scene as BEA1991, is a Dutch-English audiovisual artist who merges her background in aerial acrobatics with a fluid and diverse artistic practice. She identifies as a pantheistic artist, reflecting her personal fluidity and variety of interests, including exploring spiritual elements in everyday life. Her self-taught and introspective processes, infused with comic satire and contemplative animism, shape her visual and musical creations. Her practice ranges from still-life photography to manipulations of organic materials, visual effects, and fashion design. Since 2014, she has independently released her musical works on her label BE.AWORLD; she has written for artists such as Dev Hynes & Blood Orange, Sega Bodega, and Porches; and has toured with Caroline Polachek, Robyn, Yves Tumor, Blood Orange, and Kirin J Callinan, performing in the United States, Europe, Latin America, and Asia. Since 2020, she has been providing psycho-spiritual consulting, helping artists connect with their creative core through workshops promoted by educational centers such as the Gerrit Rietveld Academy and the Sandberg Institute in Amsterdam, or progressive design studios like ECCO Leather in the Netherlands.

Because of my personal fluidity and varied practice, I describe myself as a Pantheist artist. Musically as well as visually, I exist within the twisting landscape between the accessible and the obscure. I explore spiritual elements found within the mundane, and use different media forms to travel that tension. My works are greatly led by autodidact processes and contemplative Animism.

Guardialfiera (CB)

Guardialfiera has a population of 950, and it is in the heart of the countryside, framed by the calm waters of its crystal-clear lake.
In the centre of the town stands a Gothic architectural masterpiece, the Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta, of pagan origins, altered in about the year 1,000 and converted for Christian worship. Inside, centuries-old works of art and frescoes chronicle the community's thousand-year history. Another point of interest is the Porta Santa (Holy Door), which is opened with a solemn religious ceremony officiated by the bishop, in the presence of the most important religious and institutional dignitaries, on the morning of 1 June each year, celebrating the town's patron saint Gaudentius. The door is then closed on the afternoon of 2 June.
Guardialfiera is renowned as the birthplace of Francesco Jovine (1902-1950), the famous Italian writer, journalist and essayist, who, with his realism and verismo style, described rural life, highlighting his homeland.
In addition to its natural beauty and rich religious history, Guardialfiera has a wealth of lively traditions and festivities, including the Festa di San Giuseppe (Festival of Saint Joseph), held on the Sunday closest to 19 March; the Festival dedicated to the patron saint, Gaudentius, the Girogustando nel Borgo food and wine event, the Festival of Saint Anthony, and the Nativity Scene Re-enactment.

Thanks to: Mayor Vincenzo Tozzi, Councillor Itala Trolio, Henriette van Klinken, Ella de Rijke, Rene Welkers, Ralph de Rijke, Liam Howe, Yvonne Droge Wendel, Una Jongenelis, Philippa Collin, Elisabeth Stienstra, Jeroen Dankers, and the entire community of Guardialfiera.