Culture · Japanese Culture · Travel

Nerdy Travels: Shounen Jump Exhibition

This day was partially successful and partially unsuccessful. We planned on spending our second full day in Tokyo wandering around some museums and galleries that we had been wanting to visit.

A couple of months ago I found out about the Shounen Jump 50th Anniversary exhibition which was showcasing at the Mori Art Museum in Roppongi Hills. There were three different instalments to the exhibition and ran until the end of September 2018. The first two instalments focused on manga serialised in the magazine from the 80’s and 90’s. The final instalment displayed work from the 2000’s onwards.

I think as this was such a posh area it bumped up the prices as the exhibition costed 2000 yen each which from a British point of view it seems expensive as back home most museums, gallery’s and exhibition are free or at the least come quite cheap.

The exhibit ran through all of the different manga series that had been issued in the magazine over the course of 2000 up until now.

The beginning of the exhibit showcased a timeline using first volumes of manga of all of the serialised manga from 2000 up until now. The exhibition went in no particular order in terms of series. It began with One Piece and as we made our way through it changed from series to series. The first few areas were large and displayed series such as One Piece, Assassination Classroom and Kuroko’s Basketball. Every area has framed works of the original panels from the manga as well as special full coloured artwork done especially by the mangaka’s for the anniversary. Many of the walls were also decorated floor to ceiling with snippets off the different series in their respective areas.

I finally reached the Gintama section of the exhibition which I had been looking forward to the most. The Gintama section was rather disappointing. Having said that throughout the exhibition original panels of the Gintama manga would crop up randomly from time to time and at the very end of the exhibition they had a bigger wall with a few more panels from the series. I wonder if this was a bit of a tribute to the manga as it was wrapping up its serialisation in Shounen Jump before it moved over to Giga.

One of my only criticisms with the exhibition is the different sections for each series varied quite dramatically. I would have preferred if the exhibit had made more of the series more equal in size instead of really pushing some series whilst practically ignoring others.

There were a few series that I had not heard of before or hadn’t watched or read myself. However, there was still a lot of series I was familiar with and a fan of. Areas i enjoyed the most included Gintama, Death Note, Sket Dance, Beelzebub, Haikyuu, My Hero Academia and Assassination Classroom.

The first half seemed dedicated to the really established and popular series before moving into the more up and coming section which included series like Black Clover and Yuuna and the Haunted Hot Spring. The first half was not allowed to be photographed whilst the second half allowed photos to be taken.

Overall I loved my time in the Jump exhibit and I feel so lucky to have been able to see such a special and memorable exhibition whilst in Japan. I love being able to see lots of original panels of some of my favourite works.

After finishing up at the gallery we headed out to find the Vanilla Gallery in Ginza. To sum it up we couldn’t find it. I swear it doesn’t exist. I used Google maps and made multiple attempts to find it and apparently I kept walking past it but there was no Vanilla Gallery in sight. We finally gave up trying to find it and headed home to eat snacks. I did get some nice shots of Ginza those which looked pretty cool with the dramatic sky in the background.

Until next time thanks for reading and I hope you’re having a great day!

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