How extraordinarily simple and beautiful the art of ikebana is.
As artists we can appreciate the incredible deep internalized expression of beauty coming from the hands of Grand Masters. It is amazing how long it takes to learn and achieve the utmost poignant simplicity!
More than simply putting flowers in a container, ikebana is a disciplined art form in which nature and humanity are brought together. Contrary to the idea of floral arrangement as a collection of particolored or multicolored arrangement of blooms, ikebana often emphasizes other areas of the plant, such as its stems and leaves, and draws emphasis toward shape, line, form. Though ikebana is a creative expression, it has certain rules governing its form. The artist’s intention behind each arrangement is shown through a piece’s color combinations, natural shapes, graceful lines, and the usually implied meaning of the arrangement.
Another aspect present in ikebana is its employment of minimalism. That is, an arrangement may consist of only a minimal number of blooms interspersed among stalks and leaves. The structure of a Japanese flower arrangement is based on a scalene triangle delineated by three main points, usually twigs, considered in some schools to symbolize heaven, earth, and man and in others sun, moon, and earth.
To arrange the stems and flowers exactly as one wishes, a familiarity with many different ways of fastening and positioning them is necessary. These techniques are what people attend ikebana classes to learn. Usually, three to five years are required to acquire these technical and expressive skills.
If you have never watched ikebana before, this lovely video is quiet surprising of how branches are bent, chiseled, folded and coaxed to create these amazing forms.
Tetsunori Kawana is an installation artist who loves to touch natural material. His works are temporary and evanescent reflecting the cycle of life and decay in nature itself.
“Always I am listening to the heart-beat of the Earth and my creations echo this pulse of Nature.”
“Treasure each encounter with natural material for it will never recur.”
Each work is created to fit the space it occupies “I cannot completely control living material. I must respect the life of the material.”
Japanese artist Toshiro Kawase produces some the finest examples of ikebana. Characterized by extreme minimalism and discipline, it requires intense study the specimen in order to ascertain how to best emphasize its form.
Yet, like all art, at some point the true master must transcend the intellect in order to let the spirit of the piece shine.
The following images, including the specimens above, are all from Kawase’s latest book ‘Inspired Floral Arrangements’.
ALWAYS THE ARTIST