Melbourne Ikebana Festival, 7 and 8 September

Saturday 30 July 2011

The Ten Virtues of Ikebana 4

Ikebana helps us learn about many kinds of flowers and trees with very little effort. We learn their names, and we become in tune with the seasons and nature.
But you may ask “how come knowing about plants can be a virtue?” or “What kind of benefit does it give?”                        
To answer these questions, first we have to consider the definition of virtue. It is not about benefitting yourself but being of benefit to others. Just like people respect cultured people, they also respect virtuous people.                                   

These values can be seen as kinds of goals for us to achieve in our lives, although getting rich seems to be the only goal in life for many today.

However, there are some who respect those who have a great knowledge of plants. In particular, we learn how short the life of a flower is. 

This in turn, makes us realise how short our life is. We all have many attachments and desires. We hope for wealth or fame or success in our short lives. How small and meaningless those goals are!
Whether people respect your knowledge or not, you will come to realise how valuable that knowledge is. Then you will agree with the idea that learning about plants is a virtue.
This is another simple work. Three calla lilies are put together using a toothpick and a rubber band. Attach them to a short stem. Then, place the stem inside the glass container. Hide the base using a dracaena leaf.

Friday 22 July 2011

Recent Work: Wedding Flowers

Bridal Tied Posy (not wired)
Materials: Roses, Lisianthus, Queen Fabiola, Silver Suade.

Working with a bride to be is always exciting and challenging. Notice that white Queen Fabiola is creating an interesting, almost playful effect for this round bouquet. Following is the comment from the bride.

"Thanks again for the bouquets and button holes. They were beautiful and we received many positive comments about the flowers. Arigatogozaimashita!"

Friday 15 July 2011

Wednesday 13 July 2011

From Shoso's Gallery

Melbourne International Flower and Garden Show 2010

After Mondrian: A Celebration

This installation was inspired by the works of the Dutch artist Piet Mondrian (1872 – 1944). Robert Hughes says of Mondrian: "All his paintings are about the disentangling of essence from attributes: the enunciation of what is central, and what peripheral, in his experience of reality."

This work is a celebration of line and colour. The central section is a formal study of how line and colour influence composition. 

I used lemons with the yellow dahlias to create a sense of depth in the solid block of colour. Similarly the varying hues of red in the apples and the peppers and the combination of the purple statice and the blue delphinium add texture and draw the eye in deeper. The seeds also make a nice contrast to the darker colour of the pods.

The outer sections move into a freeform exploration of line in nature. I wanted to contrast the sharp definition in the central section with the random way in which lines form in nature. I’ve used some recycled pink netting as a backdrop and some asparagus fern and roseberry to emphasise the beautiful shape of these branches I rescued from a hard rubbish collection in my neighbourhood.

Monday 11 July 2011

From Shoso's Gallery

Melbourne International Flower and Garden Show 2011
"Hakanashi" by Shoso
30 March - 3 April 2011
Royal Exhibition Building, Melbourne

The layers in this work allow the viewer to experience a number of different works of art by changing their point of view. Hakanashi means transient in essence and is part of a very old system of Japanese aesthetics, dating back to the 10th century. 

All floral art is by the nature of its living materials ephemeral, but this piece is in essence a series of snapshots of transient images that last only as long as one does not move. In moving a new perception emerges. Rather than a fixed and rigid artwork, no one particular perception of this work is given precedence over any other.

Thursday 7 July 2011

Recent work

Flower for Birthday Party
Date: 11 June 2011
Venue: Cecconi's, Melbourne
Materials: Oncidium, Cymbidium, Pansy

Following is a nice comment from my client.
"Thank you so much for the magnificent 21st flowers they completed the table beautifully. 
The colour and flower choice was beyond my expectation! "

Recent Work

Exhibition Opening
Date: 2 July 2011
Venue: Lesley Kehoe Galleries, 101 Collins Street, Melbourne
Materials: Japonica, Molucca balm, Blushing bride

I enjoy working for this beautiful gallery using some of their wonderful containers. This is a small winter arrangement using a combination of white, pale pink and light green materials. This is the coldest time of the year but the combination of the colours brings warmth.

Lesley Kehoe Galleries

Lesley Kehoe Galleries is internationally recognized as one of the world’s leading dealers in fine and rare Japanese art. With over 25 years’ experience, the Galleries enjoy an unparalleled reputation for quality and professionalism. 

Monday 4 July 2011

The Ten Virtues of Ikebana 3b

The other interpretation of the third virtue of Ikebana is that flowers can give us a profound pleasure, which is beyond words. 

While flowers growing in the garden belong to the everyday worlds, cut flowers belong to a different realm. In Ikebana only cut flowers are used. As soon as they are cut, they begin to die.

Ikebana artists are trying to give eternal life to mortal objects, and in trying to do so they go through spiritual experiences. 

You may not be able to experience that depth of feeling from the start. However, many students of Ikebana soon notice that they find flowers more beautiful than ever before. This is the first step toward the appreciation of non-verbal communicative power of flowers.
In this month’s work I used stapler to fix Spanish iris leaves. I put Hydrangea flower off centre and added white Madagascar jasmine behind. 

You may notice a harmony of curbing lines, those of leaves, flowers and container. To me, the combination of green and white somehow creates an imaginative, even mysterious space.