Though the obscenity trial of the artist known as Rokudenashiko — real name Megumi Igarashi — ended earlier this month with a conviction on one of her charges, we haven’t heard the last of her. She plans to appeal the verdict, which is good news for the press and the public, since few court trials of recent memory have been as entertaining.
Rokudenashiko’s crime was distributing 3-D data to sponsors of one of her projects: a kayak in the shape of the artist’s own vagina, big enough to launch in open water with a human in the driver’s seat. According to police the data qualifies as obscene material, so Rokudenashiko was basically distributing pornography. She said the data constituted a work of art and was thus protected by free speech statutes. She also emphasized that the purpose of the project was to challenge the notion that depictions of female genitalia are inherently “shameful.”