Melbourne Ikebana Festival, 7 and 8 September

Tuesday 25 June 2013

Sunday 23 June 2013

Wedding Flowers

A basic package for wedding flowers includes a hand tied bouquet (partially wired)  and buttonholes (wired).
My client asked me this time to combine white lilies and calla lilies. It was a challenging combination, but it turned out to be a wonderful naturalistic round bouquet with over 30 rose heads and a French double satin ribbon.

Wednesday 12 June 2013

Ikebana Today 12

We are investigating the Ikebana boom after the WWⅡ. It is a very complicated phenomena but one thing we can say is that most of the participants in the boom seemed to be young women. Although there are no reliable statistics about the number of Ikebana students, some estimates put it up at around thirty million between 1965 to 1975. After the period of rapid economic growth, the number gradually decreased but it was estimated to be more than ten million in 1990. It may be less than it used to be, yet it was a huge number! Why is it that Ikebana was so popular at that time?

My hypothesis is that Ikebana gained new status after the war. I have said before that Ikebana was a sign of status for a virtuous person in the Ikebana boom in the Edo period. What kind of status did Ikebana represent after the war? Certainly many women found it helpful in impressing future partners. Compared to good looks or a good academic record, being an Ikebana student is much easier and more economical. Nevertheless it had a strong effect. What was that?

To answer that question, we need to look at how the Sogetsu school promoted Ikebana after the war. It was founded in 1927 and it gained over one million members in only 30 years or so. If this was a new religious movement or some kind of social movements, there would certainly be much research into it. However, few researchers are interested in Ikebana. Anyway, the point is that Sofu, the founder of Sogetsu school gave a new meaning to Ikebana and lead the Ikebana boom after the war. I’ll talk more about that in the next issue.

This is a wedding bouquet I made for a client who wanted me to use so many different kinds of flowers. This is a good example of how I have to as a professional balance what a client wants and aesthetic effects. 

I’ll  give a talk about Hiroshi Teshigahara at Kyoto University on 1 June. Please come if you can. Contact International Society of Ikebana Studies (ISIS) for the details.