Japanese Flower Arranging and Lecture
with local Ikebana Master, Brian Mikesell
Saturday, March 7 from 1-5pm
Brian Mikesell will be creating ikebana arrangements at the gallery from 1pm until 4pm, Saturday, March 7, followed by a reception for the artist and informative lecture with a question and answer segment. The arrangements will be on display at the gallery until the flowers wilt.
Not satisfied with merely appreciating flowers in a traditional vase, Japanese people in the early 16th century endeavored to give deeper meaning to the thoughts accompanying the process of arranging flowers. In other words, they wished to arrange flowers (tateru, to arrange stems in an upright or standing manner), rather than simply placing them in the vase. An early attitude of passive appreciation gradually developed into a more deeply considered approach. This approach forms the basis of what we call ikebana. We arrange plants cut and removed from nature so that they are filled with new beauty when placed in a new environment. Rather than simply re-create the shape a plant had in nature, we create with branches, leaves, and flowers a new form which holds our impression of a plant’s beauty as well as the mark of our own spirit. Ikebana should also suggest the forces of nature with which plants live in harmony-branches bent by winter winds, a partially unfurled petal, a leaf half-eaten by insects…
Save the date and sign up for a “freestyle” ikebana workshop with Brian at the gallery,
Sunday, March 22 from Noon-3pm.
About the instructor: Brian Mikesell has achieved the rank of Kakan (Assistant Professor, 2nd Degree) in the Ikenobo School of ikebana under the instruction of Toshiko Shindo Alden (Sokatoku rank) and Michiko Baribeau (Junkatoku rank). He has taught ikebana workshops for adults at the New York Tachibana chapter of Ikenobo as well as lessons for high school students. As an artist, Brian Mikesell works primarily in photography, artist books, and ikebana. Much of his work is rooted in the landscape and natural world, with an emphasis on details that may normally be overlooked. He is also interested in the ways we experience the world as we travel through it and how we each make an effort to represent our journeys. He believes fundamentally that, while much artwork makes a necessarily serious contribution to the world, there should be balance and art should equally endeavor to lighten and lift the viewer. He makes his home in Mill River, Massachusetts.