These amusing supernatural designs are the final pages of the books from Kunisada’s series ‘Shunshoku hatsune no ume (The Erotic Adventures of Six Women)‘. I have read* that the title loosely translates as ‘the sexual intercourse of heavenly apparitions’, and that the phrase here is used as an epilogue.
There are references to Chinese sources that mentions the existence of ‘apparitions who had heads in the place of their genitalia.’ Kunisada must have felt triggered to present his own visual translation.
Vie For Love
Shunshoku hatsune no ume is an erotic satire of the highly renowned book by Tamenaga Shunsui (1790-1843) that tells the story of three women who vie for the love of an adopted son of a brothel owner. Shunsui was also the author of this erotic version.
Click HERE for more insights on this book and another striking design from this series that portrays a foul-mouthed couple…!!
You can check out all the designs from the series at the British Museum…!!
* ‘Japanese Erotic Fantasies: Sexual Imagery of the Edo Period‘ by Chris Uhlenbeck…et al.
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