It is now the end of June. So, for my last ikebana at the offices of the Japanese Consul General in Melbourne I decided it would be most appropriate to use Australian native flowers in a vase by an Australian ceramic artist. I chose banksia integrifolia and have used a vase by Ian Jones, a ceramic artist whose studio is at Gundaroo north east of Canberra (see: www.sidestoke.com/LaughingFrog/index.html). The natural ash glaze picks up the creamy yellow of the flowers and soft green of the leaves that have a pale velvety underside. This is a beautiful plant that can grow into quite large trees. As its common name(coastal banksia) suggests I was able to pick these branches near to my home within 150 meters of the sea. I like the seed cones that remain on the branches for their interesting appearance and texture and think they go well with the visual strength of the vase. I'm afraid the work looks a little flat in this photograph. The branches left and right both come forward toward the viewer.
I must particularly thank Mrs Toyama, Program Coordinator, at the Japan Information and Cultural Centre for her assistance and encouragement over the past month enabling the exhibiting of my ikebana.