Dance costume

Senufo peoples
20th century, 1950–75
Artist Unidentified

Object Place: Cote d'Ivoire


Overall: 136 x 170 cm (53 9/16 x 66 15/16 in.) with outstretched arms

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Fiber, pigment

Not On View


Africa and Oceania, Contemporary Art, Textiles and Fashion Arts



A dance costume, such as this one, would be worn by a male Senufo dancer during masked performances. Masquerades among the Senufo are under the direction of the Poro men’s society and there exists a large quantity of different masks, most of which are female masks danced by men. Masquerades are performed during initiation cycles, community celebrations, and funerary rituals.


1970s, sold by the Galerie Ascher, Paris, to Geneviève McMillan (b. 1922 - d. 2008), Cambridge, MA; 2008, to the Geneviève McMillan and Reba Stewart Foundation, Cambridge; 2009, gift of the Geneviève McMillan and Reba Stewart Foundation to the MFA. (Accession Date: June 17, 2009)

Credit Line

Gift of Geneviève McMillan in memory of Reba Stewart