Art & Design

Learn The Art Of Ikebana

By Jacqui Thompson
9th Jul 2013

Would you like to Ikebana? The beautiful Japanese tradition of floral arrangement has origins dating back to 6th century Japan, when the Buddhist practice came to the country. The art of floral arrangement was used in worship at the Buddhist altars. 

The first formal Ikebana ('living flower') school opened 500 years ago and it was called Ikebano. A priest, whose flower arranging skills were considered so masterful, gained a following of other priests who sort out his tuition and guidance.

Today, Ikebana is widely practised throughout Japan and the world. More than just 'arranging flowers' Ikebana is an art form where the arrangements emphasise unusual parts of the plant or flower, including: stems, leaves, or a single bud. Creatively, the focus is upon form, shape, line, and colour with the actual vessel the arrangement sits within playing an integral part. Characterised by minimalism, the traditional arrangement structure is said to be based on a triangle—possibly reflecting the sun, moon, and earth.

Beyond an aesthetic practice, Ikebana possesses a spiritual element, practitioners undertake the process in silence in order to reconnect internally (similar to meditation) and to nature.

If Ikebana sounds like it might be up your alley, then don't miss out on the Sherman Contemporary Art Foundations' Japanese Floral Workshop, with Setsuko Yanagisawa of Yuga Floral Design. Yanagisawa studied floral design in Denmark, France, and Japan prior to opening her own floral studio based in Sydney.

At just $45 per person, the course runs for two hours between 2pm and 4pm on Saturday the 20th of July, 2013. Bookings are essential, as there will be limited numbers, and it is suitable for children 12 years and over.

Sherman Contemporary Art Foundation (SCAF)

16-20 Goodhope Street, Paddington NSW 2021

Ph: 02 9331 1112

Saturday July 20th from 2pm to 4pm

Bookings email:

Top image credit: Cole Bennetts

Bottom image credit: Ikebana by Grace 1868 on Flickr

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