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September 23, 2011 > Ikebana Flower Demonstration

Ikebana Flower Demonstration

By Mekala Neelakantan

On September 28, the Fremont Olive Hyde Art Guild is hosting a special demonstration on the art of Ikebana flower arranging, taught by Ikebana artist Katsuko Biko Thielke. Thielke is an instructor from the Sogetsu Ikebana San Francisco Branch, as well as a member of the Ikebana International Association. She teaches the art of Ikebana in Los Altos, Mountain View, and at Mission College, and has installed these flower arrangements at the Fine Arts museum, the Filoli Gardens, and for private customers. She is a very inventive and popular Ikebana artist, incorporating ancient methods as well as more unconventional materials into her work.

Ikebana flower arranging is one of the most distinct Japanese art forms, dating back over 500 years, with many different styles, such as Nageire, Shoku, and Moribana Ikebana, as well as thousands of Ikebana schools around the world. It is a disciplined form that emphasizes nature and harmony, focusing on all parts of the flower (stems, leaves, and petals) in the arrangement. The structure of an Ikebana arrangement is centered on a scalene triangle configuration and the concept of using a minimal amount of flower blooms in the piece. Creativity is expressed through the way in which the artist makes the unique shapes, lines, and color combinations that are present in the final product. Ikebana stresses organic construction, bringing forth the flowers' natural beauty in the arrangements.

This art form also carries spiritual importance to the artist; Ikebana is a time for the artist to feel close to and appreciate nature. "I feel very peaceful and calm, creating with fresh and unconventional materials, and when I see how much people enjoy and appreciate my flower arrangements, it makes me so happy," said Thielke.

The Ikebana demonstration will be held at the Olive Hyde Art Center on 123 Washington Boulevard from 10 a.m. to noon in the Art Center's Mission Room. Thielke will be showing attendees how to create an Ikebana arrangement, describing how to weave, cut, and arrange flowers from the basic level to the advanced and freestyle levels. Admission is free, and all are welcome.

Olive Hyde Art Guild Ikebana Flower Demonstration
Wednesday, September 28
10 a.m. to noon
Olive Hyde Art Center
123 Washington Blvd., Fremont
(510) 791-4357

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