African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Senoufo statue
Senoufo figurative statue (N° 20043)
An allegory of bravery, this sculpted narrative scene, featuring a character subduing a snake, recalls an anectode of Senufo creation.
Indeed, an inhabitant named Safazani , a snake hunter, attacked a huge boa that warned him not to kill it. Despite his warnings, the man cut up the animal, ate it piece by piece, and the resulting droppings and urine gave rise to the mountains and streams of Senufo country.
The center of the object is slightly hollowed out, forming a bowl probably intended for offerings.
Desiccation cracks, old polychromy.
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The Senoufos, the name given to them by the French colonists, are mostly composed of farmers who were dispersed between Mali, the Ivory Coast, and Burkina Faso. Councils of elders, led by an elected chief, administer the Senufo villages. Governed by matrilineal traditions, they are composed of clusters of dwellings named katiolo . Each has its own Poro association that initiates young boys from the age of seven in a succession of three cycles lasting seven years . They gather in a sacred enclosure called sinzanga located near the village, among the trees.
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