FAQ

WHAT IS IKEBANA?

Ike Bana means arranging fresh/live materials in a vase.

Ikebana started as flower offerings in Buddhist Temples in the 6th century.

It was an art of the  privileged classes -Buddhist priests, samurais, the nobility and “literati'” -Japanese intellectuals. Women could not practice Ikebana until 1831.

Today Ikebana has become a refined Floral Art with its philosophy, history, concepts, and technique for everybody to enjoy.

Ikebana artists express their feelings and thoughts through ikebana – three dimensional, asymmetrical structure made from live materials.

WHAT IS  SOGETSU SCHOOL?

“Sogetsu Ikebana can be created any time, by anyone in any part of the world, and with any kind of material”, Akane Teshigahara.

Sogetsu means Moon Grass.

The school was founded in 1927 by Sofu Teshigahara and run today by his granddaughter Akane Teshigahara.

The school is deeply rooted in Japanese tradition yet meeting the requirements of the modern age. It is a major contemporary school of Ikebana with headquarters in Tokyo, Akasaka.

Sogetsu school took ikebana from Tokonoma ( home alcove) to office buildings, department stores, streets and parks.

Sogetsu School has participants in 130 countries.

WHAT IS THE CONCEPT OF SOGETSU SCHOOL?

The Sogetsu concept is mass, line and colour.

We create mass with flowers and lines with branches. Colour is a challenging decision. Artist can select Colours in the Same Tone Range, or Colours in Contrast depending on composition, it’s setting and emphasis to be made.

HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO LEARN IKEBANA?

It depends on the time and effort you put in. Like any form of art it takes a life journey to develop dexterity and evolve as a true artist. But you will create beautiful Ikebana from your first lesson

HOW DO I LEARN IKEBANA?

You have to take fortnightly lessons. We teach strictly to Japanese curricula (text books). It is a 2 hour lesson “hands on” but you are expected to practise at home. “If the hands are properly trained, they will take orders from your heart, remain steady and always work for you” (Sofu Teshigahara)

WHAT IS THE SOGETSU SCHOOL CURRICULA?

“In Sogetsu, Ikebana basics are learned through a method called Kakeiho. It is designed to familiarize you with various kinds of plants to understand their characteristics, and to learn the basic rules and techniques for composing shapes.”(Textbook1,p3) You have to master 19 styles (shapes) before creating free style ikebana.

DO I NEED SPECIAL EQUIPMENT?

You need Sogetsu text book, Kenzan (needle aid) and Hasami (scissors) which you can purchase from Japan through your teacher.

You have to select and bring your own material to your classes.

CAN I BECOME AN IKEBANA TEACHER?

You can study Ikebana just for pleasure or you can become a professional teacher qualified through Japan. It will take years of training.

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN IKEBANA AND WESTERN FLOWER  ARRANGEMENTS?

” Ikebana is a simplicity of expression. It is not a good ikebana to stick too many flowers or branches into the vase. In ikebana we utilize every single leaf, branch and flower. Ikebana is an art of space – the space between branches, the space between flowers and leaves and the spaces between masses. This space is a plentiful void projecting tension and power.” (Sofu Teshigahara)

Ikebana is not just about flowers, it is about creating new forms, it is about love and the need to create forms, and it is about the  person who arranged it.

“In Western flower arrangements there are many prima donnas, in Ikebana -just one “, (unknown Japanese Master)

Ikebana is non competitive. We hold exhibitions not competitions.