Megumi Igarashi - or the 'good-for-nothing kid' - crowdfunded the kayak based on a 3D scan of her genitalia and sent the file to backers as a thank you

A Japanese artist on a mission to “demystify” female genitalia has been arrested under local obscenity laws for distributing a digitized model of her vagina for 3D printing.

Megumi Igarashi - who works under the alias Rokudenashiko or ‘good-for-nothing kid’ - produced the 3D scan as part of a crowdfunded project to create a kayak modelled on her genitalia.

Thirty of the individuals who funded the craft (which Igarashi calls the “p***y boat”) were sent the digital file as a thank you – an action that led to Igarashi being arrested by Tokyo police for breaking Japanese obscenity laws, reports Kotaku.

The police alleged that Igarashi, 42, collected around 1 million yen (£5700) in exchange for the scans, but local media has reported that Igarashi denies this and does not recognize the 3D scans as obscene.

Two of Igarashi's 'deko-man' dioramas. Image credit: Megumi Igarashi

The 42-year-old artist first made a name for herself with her ‘deko-man’ series of dioramas based on molds of her genitalia. ‘Deko’ is short for decoration, and ‘man’ for the Japanese word ‘manko’ which translates as ‘p***y’.

“Why did I start making this kind of art pieces?” writes Igarashi on her website. “That was because I had not seen p***y of others and worried too much about mine. I did not know what a p***y should look like at the same time I though mine is just abnormal."

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Igarashi also makes cartoons depicting her artistic process. Image credit: Megumi Igarashi

"I wanted to make p***y more casual and pop. That's how I came to make a p***y lampshade, a remote-controlled p***y car, a p***y accessory, a p***y smartphone case, and so on."

Igarashi says she turned to 3D scanning and printing when she found that silicone molds used to make her diaoramas would “gradually deteriorate”:

“I was wondering how I can make it possible, and then I finally found that 3D scanner can make it happen easily! 3D scanner can be used to make a p***y boat that will go across the ocean!”

Commentators have pointed out the apparent contradictions in a country which celebrates traditional fertility festivals by parading giant models of erect penises through the streets, but that has strict obscenity laws and has only recently made the possession of child pornography illegal.