The Kama Sutra of Vatsyayana

Illustrated by Victo Ngai
Translated by Forster Fitzgerald Arbuthnot and Sir Richard Burton
Limited to 750 numbered copies each sent with a print signed by Victo Ngai

One of the world’s great literary legacies, this manual of virtuous living, courtship and pleasure affords an intimate glimpse into Hindu culture.

Limited Edition

The illustrations reproduced here are representative of Victo Ngai’s style, however, the majority of the illustrations in the book are more explicit, befitting the subject matter.

Written 2,000 years ago, The Kama Sutra of Vatsyayana is a seven-part compendium of instruction for wealthy citizens. An early Indian treatise on the science and art of sex and love, the guide concerns itself with the pursuit of happiness and how the enjoyment of life can best be achieved. Famed for providing a guide to the practical techniques of sex, the book also advises the reader on selecting the perfect wife or husband, how to live in a virtuous manner, of taking a courtesan (and how courtesans should receive their lovers, and get rid of them), and of achieving a happy home filled with contentment for both parties. Its blend of morality and uninhibited eroticism piqued the imagination of Victorian society, and its content still fascinates today.

While the ‘various kinds of congress’ have long been a focus of Western attention, these are just one element of the holistic life that Vatsyayana outlined for his enlightened audience. For example, before seeking out the sensual pleasures, men and women should first be schooled in the 64 arts and sciences, which include tattooing, magic, the art of making flower carriages and, directly after breakfast, of teaching parrots to speak.

Winner of a Silver Cube in Illustration at the ADC Annual Awards 2019

Limitation colour print signed by the artist

Limited Edition
Translated from the Sanscrit by Sir Richard Burton and Forster Fitzgerald Arbuthnot
Typeset in Aria and printed on Abbey Pure Rough paper.
Title page printed in two colours
Eight colour plates by Victo Ngai tipped into decorative borders. 25 black and white drawings integrated with the text
Bound in cloth blocked in gold on the spine and inset with a cloth label printed and blocked in gold foil with a design by the artist
Endpapers printed with a design by the artist
Gilded top edge, ribbon marker
264 pages. Book size: 13’’ x 9¾’’

Commentary volume
Essays by W. G. Archer, Hanif Kureishi and John Keay
64 pages set in Aria and printed on Abbey Pure Rough Paper
Quarter-bound in cloth with paper sides blocked in dark blue foil
64 pages. Book size: 13’’ x 9¾’’

Presented in a solander box bound in cloth, blocked in gold and lined with cloth printed and blocked in gold foil with a design by the artist

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