‘The flowers must talk to people

2015-07-07 06:02
Exhibitor Edith Rule says flower arrangement is a way of communicating with nature She is a teacher at the Ikenobo school of flower arranging.


Exhibitor Edith Rule says flower arrangement is a way of communicating with nature She is a teacher at the Ikenobo school of flower arranging. PHOTOs: TIYESE JERANJI

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“Flower arrangement is about the way you feel. Your flowers must talk to someone and they shouldn’t feel sad or look unrealistic.”

This is what Edith Rule, a follower of the Ikenobo school of flower arranging, believes. Rule was speaking at the Ikebana and bonsai exhibition at the University of Cape Town Irma Stern Museum which was held last week.

The flowers in the exhibition where put up by her students in freestyle form arrangements.

Rule believes flowers are the way people communicate with nature.

“By freestyle we mean these flowers are able to do what you like them to do. You make them look the way you want. Make them communicate. They must talk to you about the seasons and they are an expression of what’s happening. Flower arrangement is about how you feel, it’s a connection between you and what is happening in the world,” she says.

Originally a Japanese concept, Ikebana means living flowers and is the Japanese term for flower arranging. It had its origin in Buddhism in China and Korea. It brought about, through the centuries, a refined art which was originally practised by priests and noblemen and in later centuries by Japanese in all walks of life. It became less formalised over more centuries and is today practised by enthusiastic volunteers of many different nationalities.

Rule adds that to do flower arrangement properly one must be aware of your chosen materials, their space and their surroundings.

“Some flowers won’t do well in the house and some work perfectly on a coffee table. Just know and understand your environment. This will allow your flower to talk to you the way you want it. Some flowers might be too big for a house and more suitable for a public space. Flower arrangement is a modern thought into a modern feeling. It’s a way of communication and to express yourself,” she adds.

To create beautiful ikebana the selection of different kinds of plant material demands an experienced eye and considerable technical skill in order to create a kind of beauty that cannot be found in nature.

Thys Klem, exhibitor of the bonsai, says one of his trees, a wild olive, is 40 years old.

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