On Sunday of last week I was invited to give an open air demonstration at an 'open garden' fund-raising event for the children's charity Cottage by the Sea * . Five gardens in all were open, including 'Northleach', which is an extensive Japanese garden and an appropriate one in which to set ikebana. 

When giving a public demonstration I always start with a basic arrangement from the early part of the Sogetsu curriculum. These arrangements make it easy to explain the essential asymmetrical nature of ikebana, and its principal elements of line, mass and space. It also allows me to mention the relevance of the concepts of 'In' and 'Yo' (Japanese for what most of us know as yin and yang).

Here I am making a basic slanting arrangement. In and Yo dictate that in a naturalistic arrangement flowers face toward the sun overhead rather than being directed at the viewer. 

Having the opportunity to gather materials from this beautiful garden, I was able to make this large nageire (tall vase) arrangement using nandina, pomegranate and some orange chrysanthemums from the florist. 

In the garden I photographed the finished arrangement against some antique doors. 

I reconstructed, trimmed and slightly altered the work at home, then photographed it against a plain backdrop. At the demonstration I had also made arrangements in a glass vase and a Japanese lacquered basket. 

I concluded the demonstration with an arrangement of Australian native materials in a ceramic vessel by Graeme Wilkie * from Qdos Gallery Lorne. 

Greetings from Christopher
26th March 2016

* Click on the blue text for further information

1 comment:

  1. Beautiful arrangements, just beautiful. Best to you both, Michael