Mayumi Oda (b. 1941)
An Aerial Cycle
United States, 1977
Silkscreen; ink and color on paper
Gift of James A. Michener, 1981

Oda explains how this series of prints was inspired by the illustrated text Victorian Inventions, written by Leonard de Vries (1919–2002) and first published in 1971. In the context of this exhibition, however, it is difficult to overlook the profound impact that Victorian England had upon Japan’s modern sexual culture, at first promoting a nationwide mood of sexual conservatism, which led to the decline of shunga at the beginning of the 20th century, but ultimately inspiring the fashion that exemplifies costume play (cosplay), one of Japan’s current modes of sexual expression.