ukiyo-e wakashu kabuki
Marijn Kruijff
7 min

Intimate Brothel Scenes From Kunimori IIs Shunshoku Irifune Nikki Series

7 min

The following images are all the illustrated pages are from the book series ‘Shunshoku Irifune nikki’, issued around 1840, designed by Utagawa Kunimori II (act. ca.1830–1861). 

Kunimori ukiyo-eFig.1.

Heel Dildo

An unusual comical scene portraying a woman satisfying herself with a harigata (dildo) attached to her heel while being watched by an aroused voyeur helping himself.

Kunimori shungaFig.2.


A very passionate courtesan (look at the tissues surrounding her!) follows the sensual activities that take place in the other room.

Kunimori shunga artFig.3.

Bird’s-Eye View

A lovely bird’s-eye view of the interior of a brothel showing several activities inside the rooms.

utagawa kunimoriFig.4.


In the hallway of a brothel a young impatient samurai is making advances to a young courtesan. The design is depicted in perspective and in the background we can see a female servant checking on the lights.

utagawa kunimori ukiyo-eFig.5.


In a colorful setting we see a wealthy couple making love while still wearing their luxurious clothes. The folding screen in the background features a phoenix with spread wings.

ukiyo-e wakashu kabukiFig.6.

Wakashu Kabuki

A very rare scene depicting a female as a wakashu (literally "young-man style") kabuki, normally only concerned young men. While the woman was taking off her make-up she has been convinced to get involved in an intimate get-together.

Utagawa Kunimori shungaFig.7.

Cosmetic Tooth Staining

An inexperienced insatiable young samurai is making love to a mature prostitute. She has cosmetic tooth staining called ohaguro. The male’s kimono features mandarin ducks in a stream.

shunga boat scene KunimoriFig.8.


On a pleasure boat a courtesan is cleaning a sake cup in the water of the river while her client is playing with her private parts. In the background we can see a lot of traffic on the water.

kunimori japanese shunga printFig.9.


A superb scene with a loving couple embracing it each other tightly at the moment of orgasm.

kunimori japanese shunga artFig.10.


A couple has interrupted their dinner for an intimate exchange. The garden and the pond behind the couple add to the atmosphere.

intimate couple with voyeurFig.11.

Biting the Sleeve

A couple involved in wild lovemaking is being watched by a female voyeur who’s looking through a crack of the opened window in the background. In her excitement, the woman laying underneath her partner, is passionately biting the sleeve of her kimono.

intimate couple on the porch shungaFig.12.

Stone Water Basin

Outside on the porch a man has grabbed his lover and is stimulating her private parts while his erected member is ready for action. A stone water basin with a bamboo scoop can be seen next to them.

a sensual woman sitting on the porchFig.13.


A subtle scene featuring a woman on the porch of her house getting some water from a bowl. The tissue that sticks out of her private parts is a reminder of her activities inside the house.

kunimori-erotic woodblock printFig.14.


An insatiable couple is making love all night long as indicated by the countless tissues surrounding them. The gold-lacquered cupboard behind them features a kingfisher sitting on a twig lurking for prey.

kunimori shunga printFig.15.


A dynamic comical scene of a male jumping of a balcony while being chased by a dangerous woman holding a wakizashi (samurai short sword).

Japanese erotic printFig.16.


A middle-aged samurai is moistening his fingers to make it easier for his huge member to penetrate his lover’s vulva.

erotic print felltio cunnilingusFig.17.

Sixty-Nine Pose

A striking design featuring a couple that are about to have mutual oral sex in the sixty-nine pose. The gold-lacquered folding screen behind them feature swallows and peonies.

client and prostitute shungaFig.18.


A maiko (a young geisha in practice) has plied a customer and they are now negotiating on the special services of the mature courtesan who is standing at the door.

vigilant intimate couple on the porch shungaFig.19.


A vigilant couple sitting on a porch in the front of their house are scanning their surroundings. The woman is stroking the man’s penis as they get ready for intercourse.

geisha behind the scenesFig.20.

Behind the Scenes

A courtesan is handing a wig to her colleague. They are getting ready to get to work. A very interesting ‘behind the scenes’-design.

woodblock print KunimoriFig.21.


A merchant is standing in front of the entrance of a brothel.”

Kunimori shunga art JapaneseFig.22.


“Two courtesans have a get-together during their chores. This woodblock design has been printed almost exclusively in the colors grey and light blue.”

ukiyo-e KunimoriFig.23.

Private Room

“A courtesan and her client are relaxing in a private room. This design is dominated by the colors grey and light blue.”

kunimori kuchi-eFig.24.


“A peaceful image of a flower arrangement and a garland.”

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