Kim Jong Un's bizarre North Korea propaganda photos

Whether at a lubricant factory, orphanage, potato company or fish-pickling plant, Kim Jong Un has conducted sporadic visits to odd and quirky North Korean sites throughout the years.

Through the years, Kim has visited several companies, including a "newly-remodeled" Pyongyang Teacher Training College and trackless trolley factory, around the regime’s capital to provide "field guidance," according to North Korean propaganda. The despot is often photographed with a massive grin and interacting with factory workers as several officials stand in the background taking notes -- about something -- during the visit. The only details released about the trips come through the official state news agency, KCNA.

Kim usually includes praise for the workers.  

At times, he’s joined by his rarely-seen wife, Ri Sol Ju, and his sister, Kim Yo Jong, with the women often seen peering at glass cases of beauty products or standing -- smiling -- behind the despot.

Here are some of the more bizarre photos of Kim during his visits.

2013 to 2016: Kim at a foodstuff factory


Kim Jong Un visits the Kumkop General Foodstuff Factory for Sportspersons. (KCNA via Reuters)

Kim was photographed visiting foodstuff factories several times since assuming power in 2011. He inspected biscuits at Foodstuff Factory No. 354 in 2013 while officials took notes behind him. The leader visited Pyongyang Chidren’s Foodstuff Factory in 2014 wearing a large furry hat and lab coat while holding a package of food. Another visit in 2015 had him giggling in front of a glass case of packaged food.


North Korean leader Kim Jong Un smiles while sitting during a visit to inspect the Pyongyang Children's Foodstuff Factory, in this undated photo released by North Korea's Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) on November 14, 2015. (KCNA via Reuters)


Kim Jong Un gives field guidance to the Pyongyang Children's Foodstuff Factory. (KCNA via Reuters)

The leader’s visit to Kumkop General Foodstuff Factory for Sportspersons came after the facility went through a complete renovation, KCNA reported. The state-run news agency added Kim was "pleased" that production was occurring on a "highly intensive basis."

August 2014: Kim at a lubricant factory


Kim Jong Un smiles during a visit to the Chonji Lubricant Factory. (Reuters)

The leader was all smiles while watching an unknown substance squeeze out of a machine and into a blue canister at the Chonji Lubricant Factory. Kim reportedly praised factory employees for their work and thanked them for producing a product North Korea previously imported. He called for "steadily improving technical specifications" to improve "international competitiveness."


Kim Jong Un smiles during a visit to the Chonji Lubricant Factory. (KCNA via Reuters)

August 2014: Kim at a hosiery factory


Kim Jong Un visits the Pyongyang Hosiery Factory. (KCNA via Reuters)

Kim gave some "field guidance" at Pyongyang Hosiery Factory and was seen talking to workers as they stood in front of a wall of colorful socks. The North Korean despot made the visit because he was reportedly deeply "concerned" about "consumer goods for people’s life," Yonhap News Agency reported.


Kim Jong Un visits the Pyongyang Hosiery Factory in 2014. (KCNA via Reuters)

"The production capacity of the factory is very big, he noted, calling for operating all production processes in full capacity so as to meet the demands of people for hosiery," KCNA said in its statement.

2014 to 2015: Kim at Pyongyang Baby Home and Orphanage


Kim Jong Un poses for a picture with children during a visit to the Pyongyang Baby Home and Orphanage on New Year's Day. (KCNA via Reuters)

Kim's first visit to the orphanage was in 2014, when the facility was under construction. Kim returned the next year to a new building filled with bright-colored furniture. He is seen laughing as he played with children and toys. Another photo showed a hoard of toddlers coming toward Kim.

September 2017: Kim at a farm


North Korean leader Kim Jong Un visits a Farm No. 1116 of KPA Unit 810. (KCNA via Reuters)


North Korean leader Kim Jong Un gives field guidance during a visit to a fruit orchard in Kwail county. (KCNA via Reuters)

Kim gave more "field guidance" during a visit to Farm No. 1116, strolling through a field of unknown plants and then picking up a vegetable and inspecting the quality of it. He was also pictured marveling at apples in an orchard.

October 2017: Kim at a footwear factory


Kim and his wife at a footwear factory. (KCNA via Reuters)

Kim and his wife visited Ryuwon Footwear Factory in early October. This was the first time his wife was spotted in public in months. He watched a worker at a sewing machine and looked at children’s shoes. The photos were released with a scathing threat that called President Trump a "rabid man in the White House."

October 2017: Kim at a cosmetics factory


Kim Jong Un and wife Ri Sol Ju visit a cosmetics factory in October 2017. (KCNA via Reuters)

Kim visited the remodeled Pyongyang Cosmetics Factory and was "very pleased" with the products, which were aimed to make North Korean women "more beautiful."

"He said he felt good as the factory has been remodeled to be proud of in the world so that it would be flawless in the distant future, too," KCNA said in a statement Sunday.


Kim Jong Un and wife Ri Sol Ju visit a cosmetics factory. (KCNA via Reuters)

Kim also discussed "important tasks" for the next phase of modernizing the factory. Details of the plans were not released.  

November 2017: Kumsong Tractor Factory


Kim is pictured in a tractor during a field guidance visit. (KCNA via Reuters)

Kim had some fun at a tractor factory in November while, once again, giving field guidance, KCNA said. The despot was even pictured in the driver’s seat of a tractor with his hands on the wheel. A group of people were seen taking notes as Kim talked to them.

December 2017: Kim at a tire and potato flour factories


Kim and his officials observe the tires that were made. (KCNA via Reuters)

Just three days after launching the Hwasong-15 ICBM, Kim visited a factory and thanked workers for making the tires for the vehicle that transported the missile. The workers built large-size tires for the 9-axle missile truck. Kim also called for efforts to raise production to "satisfy the daily-increasing needs in developing the country's economy and beefing up national defense capabilities," KCNA stated.


Kim feels the tires that were made to carry the ICBM launched in early December. (KCNA via Reuters)

Kim in September tasked the Amnokgang Tire Factory with making the tires for the "great event in November," the agency reported.


Kim stands in front of potatoes at a potato flour factory inspection. (KCNA via Reuters)

The next week, the dictator was photographed in front of a mountain of potatoes during an "inspection" of a potato flour factory. Snow was also seen on the roofs of the building while Kim, wearing his black peacoat and hat, was surrounded by his officials. 

December 2017: Kim at the "sublime mountain of revolution" 


Kim visits Mount Paektu, dubbed the "sublime mountain of revolution," in December. (KCNA via Reuters)

Kim strolled Mouth Paektu, an inactive volcano and North Korea’s highest peak the regime dubbed the "sublime mountain of revolution," with several officials to celebrate the rogue nation's Nov. 29 missile launch.

"Imposingly standing on Janggun Peak, the respected Supreme Leader gave a familiar look for a while at the dizzy cliffs and the sea of trees, recalling the emotion-charged days when he realized the great historic cause of completing the state nuclear force without yielding even a moment and with the indomitable faith and will of Paektu," KCNA said in a statement.


Kim Jong Un strolls the mountain with officials. (KCNA via Reuters)

The state-run media boasted about the "nice weather" seen during the visit. Kim also spoke about building a new hotel and better facilities around Paektu station for tourism. 

January 2018: Kim at newly-remodeled school

Kim visited a newly-remodeled Pyongyang Teacher Training College on Jan. 17 and checked the classrooms for their desks and technology. In one photo, Kim is seen looking at a projection of cartoon students sitting in desks — possibly a demonstration on how the classroom would appear with children.


Kim Jong Un at the newly-remodeled Pyongyang Teacher Training College. (KCNA via Reuters)


Kim Jong Un at looking at an image in one of the classrooms. (KCNA via Reuters)

On Jan. 25 Kim and his wife Ri also did a "field guidance" at Pyongyang Pharmaceutical Factory. Officials took notes during the visit, though it’s unclear what information he provided.


Kim Jong Un, accompanied by his wife Ri Sol Ju, gives field guidance at the Pyongyang Pharmaceutical Factory. (KCNA via Reuters)

Just before the month ended, Kim also visited factory workers at the "newly remodeled" trolley bus factory.

"Looking at the factory with a bright smile on his face, he said that all buildings are neat and fine," KCNA said in a statement. "[Kim] stressed that officials and workers of the factory should bear in mind the honor and pride of working at the glorious worksite associated with patriotic sweats of Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il and their love for people and make constant innovations."


North Korean leader Kim Jong Un inspects a newly established Pyongyang trackless trolley factory. (KCNA via Reuters)

And to celebrate Kim’s New Year’s Day address, KCNA also released a stamp of the despot from the speech. 


A new Kim Jong Un stamp. (KCNA via Reuters)

August 2018: Kim at a fish-pickling factory

Kim and his wife were seen inspecting a fish-pickling factory in Kumsunpo in North Korea’s South Hwanghae Province. Photos released by KCNA showed the despot wearing a white T-shirt and hat — an unusually light and casual outfit, compared to the Mao-style suits he usually wears. 

Kim Jong Un visited a fish-pickling factory. (KCNA)

Kim told factory workers they "did a lot of work" when he heard the facility made 30 pickled fish products, including shrimp, eel, anchovy and shellfish.

On Aug. 13, KCNA announced Kim visited one of the regime’s livestock farms, and he was seen walking through the cow pens with his group of officials towing behind him.


Kim Jong Un at a cattle farm (KCNA via Reuters)

"[Kim] underscored the need to scrupulously organize scientific and technological work for preventing degeneration of fine breeds and keeping the characteristics of pure breeds and change the cow breeds of low weight increment, poor taste and milk into good breeds," KCNA said in a statement.


Kim Jong Un inspecting a fish farm. (KCNA via Reuters)

On the same day, the North Korean leader also visited a fish farm used to breed fish for the man-made lake in Kaechon City. Kim stressed to officials the importance of "massively [raising] mandarin fishes and other young fishes" for the lake to become functional.


Kim Jong Un stressing the importance of breeding the fish for the country's man-made lake. (KCNA via Reuters)

April 2019: Kim at a department store

Kim provided "field guidance" at a recently remodeled department store, Taesong Department Store, in Pyongyang ahead of its grand opening, KCNA reported. The despot was pictured looking at shoes while his officials stood behind him taking notes. 

Kim Jong Un inspecting a shoe during his visit to Taesong Department Store in Pyongyang. (KCNA via Reuters)

"Now that the modern department store has been completed, it has become possible to provide citizens of the capital with different varieties of more quality foodstuffs, clothing, footwear, household articles, sundry goods for daily use, school things and goods for cultural use," Kim was quoted saying during the visit. 

Kim Jong Un visits Taesong Department Store just before its opening, in this photo released on April 8, 2019. (KCNA via Reuters)

The North Korean leader donned a Mao-style suit for the visit. 

Kim Jong Un visits Taesong Department Store. (KCNA via Reuters)

October 2019: Kim on horseback

Kim opted for a more active photoshoot this time round, channeling his inner Vladimir Putin with images of him riding horseback on a sacred mountain.

In this undated photo provided on Wednesday, Oct. 16, 2019, by the North Korean government, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un rides a white horse to climb Mount Paektu, North Korea.  (KCNA via AP)

The undated images, released by Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) shoed Kim dressed in a long winter coat riding a white horse on snow-covered Mount Paektu, the highest point on the Korean peninsula.

Kim Jong Un rides a white horse to climb Mount Paektu, North Korea. Independent journalists were not given access to cover the event depicted in this image distributed by the North Korean government. (KCNA via AP)

The government-run agency also said that during a visit later that day in Samjiyon County, Kim lamented over the U.S.-led U.N. sanctions that were imposed after nuclear talks broke down.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.