Monday, September 24, 2012


On the first day of advanced class we dove into the subject of Ikebana, the Japanese art of flower arranging.  Ikebana translates to mean "the living flower."  The Ikenobo School, located in Japaen, is the oldest Ikebana school.  There are Ikebana headquarter all over the world with it's main office in Kyoto, Japan. 

The process of Ikebana is about more than just flower arranging, but also connecting with the flowers and yourself through self-enrichment and the art puts a large emphasis on shape, line and form. The arrangements are minimalistic and require little material. 
In Ikebana, the front, or sunnyside of a plant or flower is referred to as the "yo", while the back or shady side is referred to as the "in."  There are three primary placements of stems in the work: Shin, Soe and Tai.  Shin means "heaven" and it is considered a 4/4 primary placement. Soe means "man" and it should be 2/3rds or 3/4ths of Shin.  Tai means "earth and it is 1/2 of Soe.  Ashuri are the supplements or helpers in the arrangements, also known as filler materials.  They can sometimes be higher than the primary placements.  In Ikebana there are left-handed and right-handed arrangemetns depending on which direction the material is leaning.

The three styles of Ikebana are formal, slanting and cascade and three types of arrangements: Moribana, Nageri and Shoka. 
You might notice there are some woven leaves in a few arrangements.  I learned how to weave a nautilus shell and tubes with foliage today.  They are really lovely to work with and add a lot of interest to the arrangements! What do you think of the Ikebana pieces?

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