Passionate Shunga Design of a Covert Encounter On a Stairway
05 augustus 2017 
1 min. read

Passionate Shunga Design of a Covert Encounter On a Stairway

The following shunga design is from the superb series ‘Kurawa no tanoshimi‘ (c.1820s) by Katsushika Hokusai (1760-1849). In the past this series was attributed to Hokusai‘s daughter Oi (c.1800-1866).

shunga prints - hokusai -staircase

Passionate encounter on a stairway‘ (c.1820s) from the series ‘Kurawa no tanoshimi‘ by Katsushika Hokusai


A scene that takes place on a staircase, probably in a tea house, featuring a young couple in a quick intimate encounter. Hokusai emphasizes their passion by the solid hug of the young man and the fallen lantern next to them.

Printing Process

During the printing process various beautiful details have been added such as silver and gold pigment details to the blanket and black lacquer on the woman’s belt and lantern.


The Japanese art expert Haga Toru (1996:101) explains that a staircase is an unusual architectural feature in a Japanese house, and that it existed only in the houses of the wealthy, in tea houses and theatres. He names it as one of the preferred ‘fantasy’ places for quick precarious sexual encounters.

Click HERE for more articles on Hokusai!

This piece is still available in our gallery. Click HERE to check out the price!

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.
Place comment

Secrets revealed of an erotic art genius Find out in our free E-Book