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Art Gallery the Eye and the Hand

The Senufo

scattered between the Ivory Coast and Burkina Faso, Mali, one million five hundred thousand Senufo, live off agriculture and occasional hunting. they live in villages ruled by councils of elders, who elect a leader. cohesion of the tribe is reinforced by the Poro society initiates, and educates the Senufo men from lâge 7 years. Senufo theology based on the presence of a powerful god, Koulotiolo, and a mother goddess Katielo, which through the rites of the Poro society ruled over the world.
The Senufo art is one of the first to have been admired by Westerners, their artistic production is abundant, and their statues and masks are characterized by a mixture of realistic detail, allied to pure geometric forms. playing on the empty and full.


the Senufo, use different types of masks, according to the occasion. mask called Kpéliyée used by members of the Poro society has a heart shaped face surrounded by fins. mask helmet représentatnt janiforme a buffalo head is used for funerals and in times of crisis. its main function is to destroy the evil spirits, his power comes from a small cup placed on top of his skull containing magical substances. sometimes for dancing sparks out of his mouth that earned him the name "fire-eater." another type of helmet mask, a buffalo head, under a pair of antelope horns, are used primarily during initiation ceremonies poro.
Senufo artists have created three types of crest, the first focused pendnat celebrations celebrating the farmer the most productive, is a helmet bearing a statue of a woman, the second type supports a pair of horns, the third finally worn during ceremonies initiation Poro has a vertical panel perforated.


Senufo statues style varies greatly, however they can be identified by their heart-shaped face their nose in their hair and arrow, crescent-shaped. Their size varies between 25 and 120cm. Plombibele Senufo statues called "those who give birth" are among the most famous artwork, they are used during ceremonies for the funeral of members of the Poro society.
in the central region of the country Senufo, they are left standing in the middle of the ceremonial circle, while in the southern part of the country, they are worn and beaten on the ground so as to give a rhythm to the dancers during the ceremonies: they been dubbed in the West "batting rhythm"
Secret societies have also used the statues known as nopm Kafigéléjo of which personifient minds with judicial powers, and punitive damages. they are covered with a piece of cloth and a thick crusty patina. Large statues of birds are placed on the ground or carried by the male leaders of the new initiates during ceremonies of the Poro society.

Everyday objects

Senufo artists have decorated a large number of everyday objects with figurative forms: pulleys decorated with a bird's head or buffalo boxes ointments, doors and furniture. farmers the most productive are rewarded with canes decorated with human figures or statues of birds, blacksmiths Senufo produced refined copper jewelry such as rings and hand decorated SIDS head of cattle or chameleons symbolizing their genesis and apotropaic amulets.

According to the tribal art of Black Africa, Jean-Baptiste Bacquart


Collection Armand Auxietre
Art primitif, Art premier, Art africain, African Art Gallery, Tribal Art Gallery
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