Senufo Royal Ancestor Figure
51.2″ (130 cm)
Estimated 18th Century
The Young Historical African Art Private Collection
No known exhibitions
No known literature
Katileleo Statue, Mother of the Village
The Senufo live in four countries: the northern Ivory Coast, Ghana, Burkina Faso and the extreme south of Mali. The matrilineal society of the Senufo coalesces in the 16th century and established a single language, Syenia, which is the origin of the name Senufo that the French gave them. Among the many ritualistic items created by their artisans, the most revered are the large-sized sculptured called Pombibele; some are used during the funerals of poro members. Among the Senufo of the central regions, they are used for societal display and in the south they are used for dance rituals and processions.
This rare antiquity of Royalty is in fine condition. This Senufo Tribe piece is ceremonial and features a highly important Senufo female ancestor figure. Masterfully rendered from a “sacred wood” found on a circular island of forest in the savannas of the Ivory Coast. mother of the Village commemorates the primordial or ancestral mother; Senufo women belonging to the Sandogo, a society of female diviners that pray to Katie for fertility; myth and calibrates enduring beauty.