The characters depicted in shunga represent the whole spectrum of Japan's society. Its cast exists from nobleman to farmers, from excited housewives to high-class courtesans, from foreigners to monks, from warriors to kabuki actors, but additionally the tattooed members of the working-class participated within this esoteric neighborhood. The following 10 are some colourful examples:
Flying Geese - Utagawa Kunisada
This plate comes from an expensive erotic image book, a three-volume perform known as Prospects for the Four Seasons, which possibly was commissioned by a wealthy merchant. A couple is involved within a vigorous love-making session. On his back the man sports a tattoo of among the list of Suikoden heroes. On the wall behind them two woodblock prints happen to be pasted, with certainly one of them portraying the well-known kabuki actor Matsumoto Koshiro V. The couple seems to be distracted by the noise of your flying geese which is often seen by way of the window.
Within the Bedroom - Utagawa Kuniyoshi
A shunga scene developed by the terrific Kuniyoshi inside a related composition because the earlier print by Kunisada. The lady is partly covered by her blue kimono with gourd plants decorations. The man is almost naked except for the red loincloth. On his back he has a incredibly detailed tattoo, displaying the poetess Ono no Komachi , who was among Japan's six immortal poets. The depicted scene from the tattoo comes from an episode in Komachi's legendary life referred to as the Praying for Rain Komachi. The title of Kuniyoshi's shungabook is known as The Female Treasure Ship and was published in 1853. Within this image the distraction of their passionate encounter is intentionally unclear.
Sashichi and Koito - Utagawa College
The sisters Ofusa and Koito, have been two well-known protagonists from Japanese classical literature and music. In this tale they are involved in a love-triangle using the tattooed dandy Sashichi who was Ofusa's husband. A design and style (c1850s) in the little koban format with strongly visible embossing.
Crowded Pleasure-Quarter - Yanagawa Shigenobu
From Shigenobu's Floating Bridge of Heaven (1830) a scene taking the viewer towards the crowded quarters of clandestine brothels. In these kind of occasions there was no privacy and just about no room for prostitutes and their customers, at ideal they were divided by a sliding door or folding screen.
Four Seasons - Utagawa Kunisada
Another style (see 1st print!) from Kunisada's Four Seasons series having a courtesan and her tattooed client. The man is penetrating the lady although making use of his thumb to stimulate the woman's clitoris. It's like the mosquito-net above them has been pulled up for the beholder to acquire a greater view. The series was published late 1820s.
Eating - Utagawa Toyokuni I
An nearly absolutely tattooed man (except for his face) is having intercourse with his lady and is consuming from a bowl in the same time. The lady is holding a cup of sake when maintaining a hairpin in her mouth. Their sexual activities appear to be of minor significance.
Mosquito Net - Utagawa Kunisada
An intimate couple is violently disturbed by a tattooed intruder. The invader is holding the husband underneath the mosquito-net though grapping the woman's kimono who's looking to flee. A renowned image from Kunisada's The Eight Dog Heroes with the Satomi Clan (1837).
Suikoden Warrior - Kuniyoshi College
In this parodic scene (c.1840s) on Kuniyoshi's celebrated Suikoden series the Suikoden hero Kyumonryo Shishin (Chinese name: Shi Jin) requires a woman from behind though utilizing his inseparable pole as an accessory.
Praying - Takeda Hideo
A silkscreen print design and style by Takeda Hideo (1948-present) displaying a pointed-headed man, tattooed with an atrocious shishi (guardian lions in Ancient China) heads and peony flowers, devotedly praying with the lady kneeling in a tempting pose. She's tattooed from her back to her heels with spectacular depictions of a blueish green Fudo ('The Immovable') surrounded by flames, dragons, carps set against a blue background. The print is entitled Praying to Fudo Myo-o in the series Monmon (a term used for tattoo in Osaka) and was made in 1976.
Takeda Hideo can be a modern day Japanese print artist who designed a large quantity of prints dominated by tattoos. He likes to get in touch with himself a cartoonist but with his distinguishing and original series, Genpei and Monmom, depicting tattooed warriors and colourful, from time to time erotic, cartoons, he has been embraced by a worldwide audience.
Tribute to Utamaro - Paul Binnie
A modern erotic print by the young Scottish artist Paul Binnie (1967-present) using a young completely naked girl sitting on a wet wooden table looking at the beholder in a tempting pose. On her back a tattoo of a shunga design and style by the terrific Japanese artist Kitagawa Utamaro from his acclaimed oban series Picture Book: Pulling Komachi (Ehon Komachi-biki) published in 1802. Binnie's print is entitled Utamaro no shunga (Utamaro's Erotica) in the series A Hundred Shades of Ink of Edo (Edo sumi hyaku shoku) published in 2005. The artist's red seal within the reduce left corner, reading Binnie, is produced in to the shape of a butterfly, referring to Puccini's opera 'Madame Butterfly', exactly where the heroine is taken unwittingly as a 'temporary' wife. There is an additional version (2009) of this design and style with no the tattoo.
If you want to know more information about Woodblock and Hiroshige please visit http://www.woodblockprintsworld.com/