Last Friday marked another milestone as I had my first Tokyo workshop on Ikebana. A few months ago, my friends Rie and Susumu invited me to collaborate with them for an autumn exhibition. As we discuss the details, the idea of having a workshop in summer came up. It will be part of Susumu's pottery summer exhibition. We are fortunate that the gallery owner is very supportive and even helped us with the logistics.

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The Facade of r_cafe Gallery and Studio in Yostsuyasanchome, Shinjuku

 

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Our Event Billboard

My first Tokyo workshop! I planned to have one but I didn't know that I would have the opportunity as early as now. I was also able to display some Ikebana arrangements using Susumu's vases.

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Mums and Earth-Colored Vase

 

Tokyo Workshop 2
Summer Arrangement Using Sunflower, Bamboo Stem, and Fire Lily

 

Tokyo Workshop 3
Sunflower and Cattails Placed in White Cubic Vase

 

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Fire Lilies with Silver Streak Leaves to Complement Susumu's White Plates

 

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Top View Arrangement Using Sunflower, Silver Streak, And Dracena Leaves

 

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Inside the Gallery's Tea Room

 

Susumu also conducted a pottery workshop on the last day of the exhibition.The exhibition and workshops were held at r_cafe Gallery and Studio in Yotsuyasanchome, Shinjuku.

 

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Ikebana Arrangement for Susumu's Pottery Exhbition

 

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Sunflower and Earth-Colored Vase to Complement the White Square Plates and Saucers

 

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Tools for Susumu's Pottery Workshop
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Susumu Explains Basic Molding Techniques During His Pottery Workshop

 

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Participants Making their Own Cups

 

Tokyo Workshop at r_cafe Gallery and Studio

 

The Ikebana workshop had two sessions: morning (11:00 am - 12:00 noon) and afternoon (1:00 pm - 2:00 pm). There were a good diversity of participants for both sessions. During the morning session, my friend Morgane joined as a participant. She is currently in Tokyo for a short visit. There were also participants from London during the afternoon session.

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Teaching Where to Place the Shin, Soe, Hikae

 

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Morgane and Her First Ikebana Arrangement

 

For both sessions, each participant received a small vase, a kenzan, and a set of flowers and leaves. I first showed them how to cut the flowers or leaves for their shin, soe, and hikae. These are the three main branches for basic Sogetsu ikebana. It is very interesting to see how focused the kid participants are in order to get the right measurements for their stems.

 

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Ikebana Arrangements Made by the Morning Session Participants

 

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The First Session Participants

 

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Measuring the Materials for Shin, Soe, and Hikae

 

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The Afternoon Session Participants Finishing Their Works

 

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The Afternoon Session Participants

 

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Afternoon Session's Ikebana Arrangements

 

While sharing a hot macha (green tea) courtesy of Ms. Kaori Watanabe (gallery owner and licensed tea ceremony sensei), the participants shared their feedback and insights during the workshop. All of them enjoyed as it is their first time to make an Ikebana arrangement. They said that it was also a good opportunity to practice their English and meet people from different places.

 

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Learning How to Make Macha (Green Tea)

 

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Ms. Kaori Watanabe Sharing the Proper Way of Drinking Macha