Growing up, I used to see my mother arranging branches and flowers she picked from the garden in our family home. She rarely made a showy arrangements using a wide range of materials, but rather made simple, clean and calm arrangements, carefully utilising a few materials that had caught her eye at that moment. Although she would laugh that she never had formal training in Ikebana, I was always fascinated by how she was able to grasp the beauty of the individual flora and arrange them so that their beauty was most apparent and fully appreciated.
“Take a good look at your branches and flowers, and they will tell you how they want you to arrange them” she’d say. I remember staring at the branches and flowers, waiting for them to talk to me. Of course this never happened in a literal sense but I’ll be forever thankful to my mother for teaching me the importance of capturing the unique beauty in nature by closely examining it, and for giving me the opportunity to play with the materials to my heart’s content.
I started formally studying Ikebana in 2000 and have been taught by multiple Master Instructors in 4 different countries. I myself started teaching in 2013 in Hong Kong, and have continued teaching since moving to Melbourne in 2016, providing certificate courses as well as introductory classes as an accredited teacher of The Sogetsu School of Ikebana. I have been a facilitator organizing Ikebana as an activity at various events including team building, birthday parties and wedding parties.
As an artist, I have participated in Ikebana exhibitions in various cities including London, Hong Kong and Melbourne. I have created Ikebana installations for films and commercials, as well as supplied Ikebana installations for events at both corporate and private settings. I have been a guest speaker and a demonstrator at universities, high schools and Japanese language schools to promote the art of Ikebana. I also create Ikebana as gifts, which can be either tailored to the client’s preference, or as “o-ma-ka-se” (my choice).
It is my absolute joy to introduce this beautiful art of Ikebana, and to continue to educate others as well as myself.
Copyright © 2016 THE WORLD OF IKEBANA MELBOURNE by Toko Tazawa - All Rights Reserved.