Holly Williams for Art-Sheep

It is a fact generally accepted that Japan is known, as a country, to be associated with some pretty weird stuff, especially when it comes to sex and erotica. From places where people pay to cuddle or watch other people sleep to their signature fetish, *ahem* tentacle porn, the Japanese have introduced a variety of bizarre tendencies, one of which is doorknob licking.

Actually having started from a drunken tweet by illustrator Ryuko Azuma and a reply to it by photographer Ai Ehara, the series “Doorknob Shojo” AKA “Doorknob Girl” portrays young girls in characteristic clothing, during the act of licking doorknobs. Now, that would probably sound like something silly and whimsical, not to mention very unhygienic, if it wasn’t for the girls’ unmistakably submissive pose and the act’s undeniable innuendo, that give the fad such strong sexual connotations, despite the lack of nudity and obscene imagery. Ehara, however, claims that essentially, the viewer is the one that will decide how the pictures are to be interpreted, with Azuma agreeing and stating,  “Many people feel like the photos are a metaphor for oral sex, but we’re not especially taking the photos with that in mind. See whatever you want to see.”

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