Sensual Sex in the Imperial Court by Kawanabe Kyosai
15 juni 2018 
2 min. read

Sensual Sex in the Imperial Court by Kawanabe Kyosai

Today we briefly put the spotlight on an eye-catching design by the Meiji master Kawanabe Kyosai (1831-1889). The print comes from his series ‘Byobu isso no uchi (A Pair of Screens)’ that consists of twelve tanzaku-e sized (7 1/8″ x 3 1/3″) prints. Each sheet is accompanied by another (so twenty-four in total), pasted to the back, that shows a related picture with text on the reverse.

Although the prints are small they are suffused with opulent details, with an abundance of gold and silver pigments, and embossing to the outlines of the bodies, giving it a three-dimensional effect. There are at least two editions of this set since there are two impressions of several sheets in the Israel Goldman collection. These vary in their use of different pigments, with aniline dyes in the later editions.

Sex in the imperial court‘ (c.1871) from the series ‘Byobu isso no uchi (A Pair of Screens)’ by Kawanabe Kyosai

This panel shows us an orgy in the imperial court. A man seen from the back holds a large magnifying glass to the genitals of the intimate couple providing a close-up of joined genitals. On the reverse (not included here) a female attendant peeps into the room.

sex in the imperial court

Close up of a different impression of the same design

intercourse close up

Close up of the magnifying glass providing a close up of the joined genitals

kyosai print

Backside depicting a female attendant peeping into the room.

Click HERE to check out other striking orgy scenes by Kyosai…!!!

Let us know your thoughts on Kyosai’s shunga in the comment box below….!!

About the author
Marijn is the founder of With more than 20 years of experience within the sensual and erotic art of shunga he is an authority in the genre. During this time he served many customers with complementing their art collection.
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