Senufo masquerade insignia staffs have an important role in Senufo masquerades: When the principle masquerader wears a mask with strong male features, such as the Poro society kunugba’a helmet mask, a secondary masquerader carries the insignia staff with him, serving as a guardian to protect the principle masquerader from evil spirits.
While the sculpture at the top of the staff has a more naturalistic face than is usually portrayed on Senufo images, other major features clearly indicate that this is a Senufo masquerade insignia staff. For example, the female figure at the top of the staff takes a distinctive seated pose, with her arms bent at the waist and projecting forward, which indicates strong female energy. Researched by Jordan Seyer
For more information, you may contact the researcher(s) noted in the title of this exhibit entry, or Dr. Billie Follensbee, the professor of the course, at BillieFollensbee@MissouriState.edu