Ikebana

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Japanese flower arranging, Ikebana is simple. Even a single flower serves as a symbol of universal truth, providing the medium through which humans can become one with nature.
Ikebana means living plant material arrangement. Generally, the term Ikebana is used for any type of Japanese flower arrangement.
Ikebana is the art of flowerarrangement that needs to stick to many rules. * X While western arrangements emphasize on using many flowers Ikebana uses very few. Sometimes an arrangement may have only one flower. * „X The western arrangement has many layers of flowers while Ikebana strives at striking the balance between the material used for the arrangement and its surroundings. * „X While western arrangements stress ¡§colors¡¨ Ikebana stresses ¡§lines¡¨.
Ikebana evolved in Japan over seven centuries and had always been the domain of men. Women started taking it up recently. It not only has the artistic appeal but it also has a deep philosophical meaning.
There are two types of basic arrangements in Ikebana.
1) Heika ¡V This is a very old arrangement style. It uses tall vases and has many rules.
2) Moribana ¡V This is a relatively new style, thus it is much more flexible that Heika. It uses shallow containers.
However, both the styles follow the common basic placements of material.
There are three placements in these arrangements,
1) Shin ¡V It means ¡¥heaven¡¦. It is the longest placement.
2) Soe ¡V It means ¡¥man¡¦. It is a medium placement.
3) Hikae ¡V It means ¡¥earth¡¦. It is the shortest placement.
Apart from these three placements all the additional branches and the flowers used are called ¡§Jushi.¡¨
The total number of placements is always odd in Ikebana. According to Japanese design principles even is symmetry. Symmetry is never encouraged as it is viewed as stagnation. On the other hand odd is asymmetry, which reflects nature and is viewed as creative.
In any standard size arrangement Shin is equal to the width + the depth of



References: Apr 11, 2009 Linda McDonnell Upright Ikebana Arrangement - Linda McDonnell

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