At a class last week I set some students the exercise of making an ikebana arrangement in which they create a mass which is contrasted with a single line. I gave a quick demonstration using some dried materials that have been sitting in the garden.
To create the mass I used the, now dried, heads of agapanthus that I had used in an Ikebana International exhibition in March. In this Sogetsu School exercise the mass must be made by the ikebanist and not merely be a single large flower head like a hydrangea. Therefore if using globular materials to make the mass a minimum of two must be used.
The second element of the exercise is line. I chose this naturally dried, unknown weed. It has multiple branches so I thought it would be a good example of creating an interesting line by extensive pruning.
This was the final result made with some very quick pruning and assembling in the classroom. The students then set about their own work, producing very different looking ikebana arrangements with a variety of materials.
Helen made a mass of echium leaves and used a single line of fuschia.
Rhonda has used an agave-like leaf for her line and rosettes of a succulent for the mass.
Kim chose a long branch with some attractive lichen and used three creamy bourbon roses for his mass.
Val has used a single cordyline leaf for her line and chrysanthemum and eucalyptus buds for her mass.
When I came home I reversed and re-set my ikebana and added two camellia leaves into the mass to give a feeling of freshness. The egg shaped ceramic vessel is from Seto City in Aichi Prefecture, Japan.
Greeting from Christopher
20th May 2018