You may be wondering what exactly a thigh exhibition may be, but it’s just as it sounds! It’s a photo exhibition going on in Tokyo by the Japanese artist, Yuria. It’s not her first rodeo either, according to RN’s article. When I first read the article, I laughed at the thought of it with a slight interest in going. But then a Japanese friend of mine went to check it out during the end of GW (Golden Week, an extended vacation period in Japan where many Japanese travel within and outside of Japan during the first week of May) but there was a line and he couldn’t be bothered. After hearing his attempt, I decided that I definitely wanted to check it out. Maybe it was because another fellow guy went, or maybe I was more interested in seeing the many people lining up to see this futomomo (“thigh” in Japanese) exhibition. Or, perhaps this was an excuse I told myself to justify my real curiosity!
On this gloomy and muggy Tuesday morning, I departed from Asakusa down south towards the exhibition on my bike I got off Rakuten. I stopped by 7 Eleven because of course I’m craving a Melon Pan, and let’s face it, 7 Eleven has one of the best Melon Pans out of all the Japanese conbinis, or convenience stores. Expecting a line, I figured I would eat my lovely breakfast on line while waiting to satisfy my curiosity. I turn the corner on my bike and see this sight:
“Obviously I’m in the right place,” I thought to myself. No line. Well there goes my chance to eat my breakfast before getting in, feeling slightly disappointed. Split second later, I’m more concerned with what is in store for me. I enter this typical Japanese complex and ring the button for the elevator to take me up to thigh heaven. Arriving on the 5th floor, the elevator doors open and I’m greeted by a gentleman coordinating traffic – not that it was crowded or anything; it is Tuesday morning after all. I pay the ¥500 entrance fee and receive a thigh entrance ticket and a thigh postcard! A postcard! I thought! If you’re not familiar with Japan or Korea, postcards aren’t all that widely available as one would think. There are what seems to be college students and some salarymen, or businessmen, enjoying the sights.
I hear cameras snapping photos and turn to see a chick snapping away. Also noticed a few men smirking as they focused on taking their pictures. Things like this always put me in a weird position – should I view this as creepy, or normal? As I ponder ethics, I’m standing in the middle of the exhibition in my smart-casual attire sweating from my rushed bike ride here. Rolling up my sleeves and wiping sweat off my forehead with my One Piece X wrist sweatband, I’m slowly making my way around observing the art and their admirers while trying not to stand out. There’s always a guy sweating at one of these events and it’s always creepy – I might’ve been that creepy guy standing there. Still confused about my ethical standing, I’m switching back and forth between looking seriously interested and smirking… Please tell me I’m not the only one who would be facing this internal battle!
After making a full rotation around the exhibition and carefully observing my fellow peers, I decide to join them in snapping some pics myself!
The bottom left portion of this collage shows OLs (office ladies, a term used by the Japanese for office ladies, and often these OLs are working there with the motive of finding a suitable partner). It’s a common thing for men to like fine legs as these, but is it common to find these snapshots focusing on thighs in every day situations in the office in an exhibition? This exhibition really sexualizes women thighs and legs. This is when it hit me – I can understand this being accepted, and here I was acknowledging and indulging.
I looked at this collection of photos and thought about the photo shoot itself. “Act cute”, “now take off your skirt slowly”, “Lotion up them thighs.” I saw that Yuria really understood the sexual aspect of thighs and legs. It felt like an AV photo shoot, but with the sole focus on the thigh and legs.
A memory came to mind as I stared at this tennis ball. It was back to when I was in Korea’s countryside with my South African and American buddies – a conversation on thigh gaps. And knowing Japan, and Korea, this could be another unorthodox exercise for thigh gaps. Like the jaw/chin slimming massaging roller.
Try this with your girl next time, would she appreciate it, or be offended? Screw that, guys gotta step up and show off them calves.
Somehow so symmetrically satisfying.
Last but not least. Actually this shot might be my personal favorite.
There are also photo collections, post cards, bookmarkers, and folder sleeves with your favorite thighs on sale ranging from ¥100-1900. I bought a post card set to send to some family and friend so, and to myself. If you’re reading this, you probably know who you are, do expect something in the mail soon!
After purchasing my post cards, I head out to the elevator when the guy motions to an omikuji box (fortune-telling papers, like a message you’d get with your cliche fortune cookie), which happens to be called a “momo mikuji,” as a play on words.