Ikebana: Japanese traditional flower arrangement art

Ikebana is a traditional art of flower arrangement in Japan that has a long history, originating in the 7th century. The method of flower arrangement is a delicate custom, where nature breathes into a subject of a simple sculpture.

Ikebana creates the shape and temperament of the work by arranging branches and flowers, and branches into a whole that expresses the feelings of people who plug.

Having peaked in the 16th century, Japanese traditional flower arrangement art was being revived with more and more people participating in the practice. Today, Ikebana focuses on creativity from colors and shapes to lines. Traditional ingredients like bamboo grass and plum branches are interspersed with seasonal grass flowers of each region.

To learn more about Ikebana, also known as Kadou, join us to learn about its history, its hidden philosophy and the basic styles of this art form.

    Shinto, the national religion of 1945, has a tradition of worshiping plants and the abundance of nature. Many grass flowers are given special meaning and become offerings to the kami souls in Shintoism. In the 7th century, when Buddhism came to Japan, flowers began to be used for sacrifice. Flower arrangement first appeared in temple worship ceremonies, gradually popular and symbolic. By the end of the fifteenth century, Mac Lord Ashikaga Yoshimasa had become a great proponent for the tea ceremony and the Chinese religion. He believed that divine sacrifices demanded a lot of hard work and, in particular, began to introduce rules for the art of Ikebana flower arrangement later on.

By the sixteenth century, the different schools of Ikebana were established and gradually separated from the strict religious context. Flower plugging is often done by Japanese generals because they believe it can help liberate the mind to make the right decisions on the battlefield. At this time, people also have special niches called tokonoma used to place flowers.

Although Ikebana has dropped significantly after the seventeenth century, today there are still more than 1,000 schools teaching this type of art. It includes Ikenobō, the largest and oldest school built by a monk in the 15th century, located inside the Rokkaku-dō temple in Kyoto.

In Japan, every plant species contains a distinct meaning. So people are very careful and strict in choosing materials to flower. For example, eternal sense pine trees are often used during the new year. On March 3 every year, peach branches are blooming and used for Dolls. The flexible bamboo symbolizes youthful strength while the apricot branches bloomed as a symbol of old age.

The meaning of Ikebana is expressed through the composition as well as the color. High winds in Japan often occur in March, so during this time, people often use curved branches to reflect the movement of the wind. White flowers are used during the housewarming occasion, because they represent water, helping the landlord to withdraw from all fires, while on the contrary, red flowers like fire will be avoided. The language of flowers, also known as hanakhotoba, will help us understand more about the specific meaning of each plant grass in Japan.

When Ikebana became part of Japanese culture through Buddhism, it brought more philosophical meanings from religion. Ikebana practitioners believe that it is advisable to pay attention and patiently flower in silence. This meditation aspect helps the insights to understand the flowers deeply, arranging beautiful and above-all layouts that are more natural.

It is important that plug-ins must understand how to manipulate materials to highlight their inherent beauty. Flowers can be disconnected and reassembled in a more aesthetically compatible or pliable position, which can be trimmed as a background for other flowers. Branches can be bent or straightened for complex shapes. Both dry and fresh materials are cut or painted as needed to harmonize the composition.