Japanese artist Megumi Igarashi, known as Rokudenashi-ko, paddles in her kayak modeled on her vagina in Tama River in Tokyo Oct. 19, 2013. Igarashi, 42, says she was challenging a culture of 'discrimination' against discussion of the vagina in Japanese society. | REUTERS
Vagina artist wins release, urges public to challenge taboos
An artist arrested for distributing 3-D data of her vagina online urged the public to outgrow the perception that female genitalia are taboo or shameful, after being released from police custody on Friday.
|Megumi Igarashi pictured with the frame of a kayak she created modelled on her own vagina|
“I believe this arrest was completely unjust and unreasonable,” said Megumi Igarashi, who signs her works as “Rokudenashiko,” which roughly means “good-for-nothing girl.”
“I have always stuck to my artistic principles,” which she said are aimed at toppling the entrenched idea that female genitalia are obscene. The perception verges on sexism, she added.
Igarashi, 42, was arrested July 12 for emailing the data to her fans, which allowed those with 3-D printers to make a precise model of her vagina, in return for crowd-funding donations that helped her complete her latest genitalia-inspired art project. She was subsequently held until the Tokyo District Court on Friday annulled her arrest and set her free late Friday night.
|Japanese artist Megumi Igarashi shows a small mascot shaped like a vagina at a news conference in Tokyo|
“I have often wondered why Japanese TV shows edit out” slang words for vagina “like it’s the normal thing to do,” she said, bringing up the issue of profanity. “But this is (a part of) my body, and I don’t understand why it’s considered obscene.”
Her arrest was protested by fans and supporters, who launched a petition drive online to demand her release. Petition platform Change.org logged more than 17,000 signatures in the two days after she was arrested.
|a diorama of an all-girl’s school|
|Vaginal battle-scene diorama 'senjo-man'|
Igarashi’s release Friday means the court acknowledged it was unjust in the first place, said her lead lawyer, Takashi Yamaguchi.
Authorities will likely continue the investigation and try to press charges, but Igarashi said she will stick to her convictions and fight till the end if indicted.
“I’m fighting against a society that for some reason” brands female privates as taboo, she said.
An interesting video about the case of Rokudenashiko and her collision with the status quo of Japanese standards for sexual portrayal. Published on Aug 14, 2015
|Manko-chan - which translates roughly to "little pussy," an affectionate term.|
If you would like your very own manko-chan or other Rokudenashiko items, go HERE