Sunday, January 05, 2014
We went to see the Shunga Exhibition at the British Museum today. Shunga has always fascinated me - they're erotic Japanese images. Beautifully drawn, and extremely detailed. The genitalia are always exaggerated, probably because Shunga were used for education, and included in young women's trousseaus. They're extremely gentle and sweet - facial expressions are tender; little moments of ecstasy are juxtaposed with moments of domesticity; there is a great deal of affection between the lovers. They're also very funny, as this image demonstrates. It's to our detriment that the West is a bit prudish about Shunga. Our relationship with sex, and our relationships with each other, could possibly be a bit healthier if we were a bit more lackadaisical about it.