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Susan Elizabeth GagliardiDirector of Graduate StudiesAssociate Professor


  • Ph.D. University of California, Los Angeles, 2010
  • M.A. Sainsbury Research Unit, University of East Anglia, 2002
  • B.A. Whiting School of Engineering, The Johns Hopkins University, 2000

Selected Publications


Senufo Unbound: Dynamics of Art and Identity in West Africa

Senufo Unbound: Dynamics of Art and Identity in West Africa, Cleveland: The Cleveland Museum of Art; Milan: 5 Continents Editions, 2014.

Translated by Anne-Marie Bouttiaux as Senufo sans frontières. La dynamique des arts et des identités en Afrique de l’Ouest, Cleveland: The Cleveland Museum of Art; Milan: 5 Continents Editions, 2015.

Single-authored book published in conjunction with the international traveling exhibition, Senufo: Art and Identity in West Africa, organized by the Cleveland Museum of Art.

  • Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland, Ohio
    22 February 2015 to 31 May 2015
  • Saint Louis Art Museum, St. Louis, Missouri
    28 June 2015 to 27 September 2015
  • Musée Fabre, Montpellier, France
    28 November 2015 to 6 March 2016


(Susan Elizabeth Gagliardi and Constantine Petridis "Mapping Senufo: Reframing Questions, Reevaluating Sources, and Reimagining a Digital Monograph," History in Africa (2021): 1-45.
(Susan Elizabeth Gagliardi and Yaëlle Biro) “Beyond Single Stories: Addressing Dynamism, Specificity, and Agency in Arts of Africa,” First Word essay, African Arts 52, 4 (2019): 1-2, 4-6 + “So, What Do We Do Now?” Dialogue essay, African Arts 54, 2 (2021): 8-11. 

Art and the Individual in African Masquerades,” introduction to a partial special issue, Africa: Journal of the International African Institute 88, 4 (2018): 702-17.

Seeing the Unseeing Audience: Women and West African Power Association Masquerades,” Africa: Journal of the International African Institute 88, 4 (2018): 744-67.

(Susan Elizabeth Gagliardi and Joanna Gardner-Huggett) “Introduction to the Special Issue: Spatial Art History in the Digital Realm,” Historical Geography 45 (2017): 17-36. 

MAP IT | Little Dots, Big Ideas: Transforming the Humanities with Geo-Spatial Analysis,” Southern Spaces (online), 28 June 2016.

(Robin O’Hern, Ellen Pearlstein, and Susan Elizabeth Gagliardi) “Beyond the Surface: Where Cultural Contexts and Scientific Analyses Meet in the Conservation of Komo Helmet Masks in Museum Collections,” Museum Anthropology 39, 1 (2016): 70-86.

(Susan Elizabeth Gagliardi and Constantine Petridis) “Senufo Unbound: Dynamics of Art and Identity in West Africa,” exhibition preview, African Arts 48, 1 (2015): 6-23.

Masquerades as the Public Face: Art of Contemporary Hunters’ Associations in Western Burkina Faso,” African Arts 46, 4 (2013): 46-59.

Podcast Episode

‘How Do We Know What We Know?’: Susan Elizabeth Gagliardi on Fieldwork and Evidence,” interview by Alice Matthews, In the Foreground, Season 3, podcast hosted by Caro Fowler, Clark Art Institute, recorded 12 February, released 26 October 2021.

Museum Blog Post

(Brittany Dolph Dinneen and Susan Elizabeth Gagliardi at the invitation of Constantine Petridis) “A Kono Power Association Helmet Mask,” The Art Institute of Chicago, 1 June 2021.

Current Projects


Seeing the Unseen: Arts of Power Associations on the Senufo-Mande Cultural ‘Frontier’, in press.

Digital Publication

(Susan Elizabeth Gagliardi and Constantine Petridis) Mapping Senufo, collaborative, born-digital publication, in progress.