Kingdom Exhibition The Road of Shin Report – Retrace Shin’s Odyssey over 15 Years


*This is a translated article by QooApp under the permission of SPICE. Reproduction in any form without permission is prohibited.

From October 14, 2023, to December 11, the Kingdom Exhibition The Road of SHIN was held at the Knowlege Capital halls located in Grandfront Osaka’s north building.

The exhibition featured the art of the popular manga series Kingdom spanning from chapters 1 to 438 across 40 tankōbon worth of story content focussing on the many foes and allies protagonist Ri Shen (Li Xin) makes on his life-long ambitions to becoming the “Great General of the Heavens.” Previously held in Nagoya, Tokyo, and Fukuoka venues, Osaka’s latest Kingdom art exhibition was advertised to include new illustration pieces exclusive to this fourth outing.

Over 400 manuscripts and 20 original illustrations

To give an overview, Kingdom by Yasuhisa Hara is a fictional adaptation of the Chinese history period known as the Warring States Period. Born as a war orphan, Ri Shin serves under the young lord of Qin, Ei Sei (Ying Zheng), and assists in his goals of unifying the lands and ending the civil war once and for all. Told as a historical epoch, Kingdom began its life in Shueisha’s Weekly Young Jump manga magazine in September 2006. The series has accumulated over 92 million copies as the manga reaches its 66th volume.

Awarded the 17th Tezuka Osamu Cultural Prize and having been adapted as a TV anime and a live-action film, the series is to reach greater heights as it announced earlier this year that the manga would be adapted into a stage play.

The exhibition chronicled itself into a whopping 14 parts plus an ending section, where each segment represented key points in the story.

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©Hara Yasuhisa/Shu Ei Sha

Chapter 0: The Unknown Boy

Born as a war orphan, Ri Shin is introduced with the panel of him vowing to become the “Great Generals of the Heavens” with his friend Hyou. Displayed together with six original illustrations drawn for the occasion, the start of Shin’s story begins with him taking his first steps as he plunges himself into the flames of conflict.

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©Hara Yasuhisa/Shu Ei Sha

Chapter 1: Battle at Dakan Plains

The next chapter sees Shin in his first conflict as a soldier. The battle at Dakan Plains is shown in its full vastness by using an entire wall to string up a panel, creating the illusion that one is on the battlefield.

Chapter 2: Monstrous Bird of Qin

The distinct laughter of Ou Ki booms around the corner leading viewers to the second chapter. Step into the shoes of Shin as he looks up towards the booming tall stature of the general, as he towers over visitors as a 3×1.5 meter tall panel.

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©Hara Yasuhisa/Shu Ei Sha

Chapter 3: Battle of Bayou

Moving on, we see Shin soaring above the panels and manuscripts that show the formation of the Hi Shin Unit the young commander would go on to lead.

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©Hara Yasuhisa/Shu Ei Sha

Chapter 4: Ou Ki and Hou Ken

Chapter 4 displays the stand-off between the Bushin and the Great General. Strung up on a red wall, the scene of Ou Ki plunging his glaive into Hou Ken’s neck can be seen as he utters that he is, in fact, a “Great General of the Heavens.”

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©Hara Yasuhisa/Shu Ei Sha

Chapter 5: The One Who Inherits

As the Great Ou Ki falls, his glaive is entrusted to Shin. An original illustration depicting his sorrow can be seen here as he holds the remembrance of his general.

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©Hara Yasuhisa/Shu Ei Sha

Chapter 6: Those Who Aspire to Be Generals

With Ou Ki gone, three company commanders vie to claim the general position. This part of the exhibition shows off the power struggle that commenced between the Gaku Ka Unit led by Mou Ten, the Gyoku Hou Unit by Ou Hon, and the Hi Shin Unit under Shin himself.

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©Hara Yasuhisa/Shu Ei Sha

Chapter 7: The Sanyou Campaign

The exhibits retread the Sanyou campaign in which the warring states of Qin and Wei clashed in the region. The battles between Mou Gou and Ren Pa are shown together alongside the duel between Shin and Rin Ko.

It also features the original manuscript of the scene of Shin holding an unconscious Kyou Kai, which readers of the tankōbon would know to be the cover art of volume 22. Visitors could take in the moment’s atmosphere as the ambient sounds of rain set the scene.

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©Hara Yasuhisa/Shu Ei Sha

Chapter 8: Battle of Kankoku Pass

The Battle of Kankoku Pass saw the invasion of the state of Qin by a Coalition Army comprised of five different states orchestrated by Zhao Strategist Ri Boku. Large panels and manuscripts depicting the different battles between the generals are accentuated by the booming drums echoing across this section’s hallway.

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©Hara Yasuhisa/Shu Ei Sha

Chapter 9: The Great Flame

The 9th section in the Kingdom exhibition shows off a manuscript of Duke Hyou telling Shin “Don’t let ever let your fire die out” moments before being slain. The red background for the page manuscripts perhaps evokes the very fire he speaks of.

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©Hara Yasuhisa/Shu Ei Sha

Chapter 10: The Battle of Sai

Hearing of the death of the Duke, the other protagonist of the story, Ei Sei ventures north to the fortress of Sai to go head-on against the Coalition Army. The Qin army finds themselves narrowly escaping defeat by the sudden reinforcements in the form of the Mountain tribe confederation led by Yo Tan Wa. Together with their newfound allies, the Qin forces reign victorious in their fight against Ri Boku.

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©Hara Yasuhisa/Shu Ei Sha

Chapter 11: Ryo Fui’s Question 

From here on, we see some original narratives unfold outside of the Kingdom manga. For instance, Ryo Fui confronts both Shin and Ei Sei as he scoffs at their methods to unify the lands through warfare. Alongside this, the inner machinations of his ambitions to make the very concept of war obsolete through commerce unfold here.

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©Hara Yasuhisa/Shu Ei Sha

Chapter 12: True Nature of Man is Light

Ei Sei upon hearing Ryo Fui proclaim how greed leads to strife and how conflict is man’s true essence, defiantly proclaims that a man’s true nature is light. The panel in this exhibit shows the many events that transpired throughout the young lord’s life and how he concluded that only when they lose sight of their light do people fall to darkness. And that “there is no greater cause of tragedy, no greater source of darkness, than warfare.”

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©Hara Yasuhisa/Shu Ei Sha

Chapter 13: A Time for Venturing Forth

The final chapter of the Kingdom Art Exhibition is made up of two original illustrations alongside nine manuscripts drawn by Yasuhisa Hara himself. Having wrestled the seat as definitive ruler of Qin, Ei Sei alongside his “Unbreakable Sword” Shin stand together as they set their sights on the other warring states. This section also happens to display the colored manuscripts from the very first chapter of Kingdom, where we see Shin in the future.

Head Up for The Ending

Exiting venue #1 of the exhibition, we see a set of walls showing almost every named character seen throughout Kingdom. Visitors would try to find their favorite characters on these walls!

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©Hara Yasuhisa/Shu Ei Sha

Before heading over to the Knowledge Theater built up on the fourth floor, the staff would hand over a ticket for re-entering the exhibition hall.

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On the fourth floor, a fabulous photo shoot spot was specially placed every Wednesday alongside a flashy text mentioning; ”Welcome to Mountain Tribe Wednesday” (山の民ウェンズデー). Heading along down to the art exhibition on Wednesdays specifically also had its other perks in that visitors could trade their tickets for a special paper mask worn by the mighty warriors of the tribes!

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Exclusive Kingdom Illustrations and Manuscripts 

Capping off the experience, the ending section displays the specially illustrated, striking key visual of the “Road of SHIN” exhibition in its full splendor. Accompanying the illustrations are rough sketch plans and notes jotted down by Hara when he was planning the course of the story of Kingdom. The original colored manuscripts of the cover art for each volume of the tankōbon could be seen here too!

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©Hara Yasuhisa/Shu Ei Sha
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©Hara Yasuhisa/Shu Ei Sha

As a special bonus, some of the striking pages and panels from the manga are displayed alongside comments from Hara. In these little snippets, he explains the exact minute details and intent he poured into each and every panel he illustrated. A gigantic 3m tall original piece named “Shin on Horseback” can be seen here as well.

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©Hara Yasuhisa/Shu Ei Sha

Taking A Look Inside the Merch Store

Finally, we reach the merchandise store filled with knick-knacks that fans wouldn’t want to miss out on. Encyclopedia, T-shirts, posters, pen cases, and special design ties, among many others, could be seen at the store.

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©Hara Yasuhisa/Shu Ei Sha
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©Hara Yasuhisa/Shu Ei Sha

The cafe neighboring the first venue downstairs even held a collaboration with the exhibition, serving up special menus comprised of different drinks and cuisines designed to look like the many characters from the manga. The drink menu also contained alcoholic beverages, such as the “Duke Hyou’s Drunkard set” comprised of a shochu server (printed with an illustration of the general) and beef jerky.

©Hara Yasuhisa/Shu Ei Sha
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©Hara Yasuhisa/Shu Ei Sha

Though the “KINGDOM exhibition The Road of SHIN” art exhibition’s Osaka outing may have ended, the ride hasn’t ended just yet as the official Twitter has since announced that the exhibition will return once more this time at the Tōhoku History Museum in Miyagi. Starting from January 14, 2023, all the way to March 12, 2023, fans will have another chance to admire the many works of Hara Yasuhisa.

KINGDOM Exhibition The Road of SHIN Details

■ Venue: Grand Front Osaka (North Building) Knowledge Capital
(Venue 1: Event Labo B1F, Venue 2: Knowledge Theater 4F)
■ Exhibition Period: October 4, 2023 [Fri] ~ December 11, 2023 [Sun]
■ Business Hours for Weekdays: 11:00 ~ 20:00 (Last Admission: 19:30)
■ Business Hours for Weekends: 10:00 ~ 19:00 (Last Admission: 18:30)

■ Ticket Fees (including tax):
Adult JPY$2,500
College (or equivalent) Students JPY$2,000
Primary, Middle, or High School students JPY$800

■ Official Website:
■ Osaka Venue Official Website:
■ Official Twitter: @kingdom_exhibit
■ Contacts: Kyodō Information 0570-200-888 (11:00 ~ 18:00 Mon to Fri)

Event Organized by: Kingdom Exhibition Production Committee
Planned by: Shueisha Inc.
Supported by: Knowledge Capital

The original article was written by ERI KUBOTA and published by SPICE, which can be found here:


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