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The Sogetsu London Branch held its 7th Annual Branch Exhibition on 3rd June (Preview by invitation) and 4th June (Open to the Public) at the Rosslyn Hill Unitarian Chapel in Hampstead. This year’s theme was ‘Let’s Try Ikebana’ and on Saturday 4th June there was a trial corner of ikebana for visitors to try something new.  

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 The chilly and gloomy morning gradually became brighter as the day progressed, and the interior of the Chapel was blessed with gentle light coming through the glorious stained glass windows. We usually do not know what type of ikebana arrangement each of us are going to show until we finish them, each arrangement taking  an hour or so to create. Ikebana arrangements are almost spontaneous works and they reflect our own feelings. According to the size of the venue, we also need to adjust the size of our creations. After setting up the venue and completing the display of arrangements, we can finally admire each other’s work immediately before the doors open to the visitors. Then it is time for us to relax and welcome everyone with a smile.

This year, we had experienced amazingly unsettled weather until recently, however the plants somehow managed to catch up with the lost time and made their flowers bloom as usual. Naturally many Branch members used their own garden materials to create really gorgeous ikebana arrangements. Others used very exotic flowers/plant materials from the flower market, the wholesaler or the florist and these stunning arrangements were much appreciated too. Many visitors commented on how colourful the inside of the Chapel was as they stepped in through the main door.

The Exhibition was welcomed as a very cheerful event by many visitors, including a lot of passers-by. The trial corner of ‘Let’s Try Ikebana’ was very popular and some had to wait in the queue. It was really nice to see children, adults and seniors, boys and girls of all ages, creating their own ikebana work. They looked like they were enjoying themselves very much with their experience of Japanese culture and so were our qualified teachers who guided them. A very rewarding and heart-warming day for us all!

(The article – by Mrs Keiko Takahashi)

< Last edited by Ikuyo Morrison on June 25, 2016 at 8:04 pm >