Sōgetsu: The Future of Ikebana?

01.07.2018

©Minh Häusler

It’s an assumed fact that art likes to be in a vacuum and tends to resist technical progress. It would seem fair to wonder, then, whether Ikebana is slightly past its prime. However, this form of flower arrangement, which some have traced back as far as the sixteenth century, is very much alive and well.

The dynamism of the Sōgetsu School of Ikebana in Tokyo, founded by Sofu Teshigahara in 1927, is testament to this vitality. For over ninety years, the master and his descendants have been striving to breathe new life into this traditional skill and allow it to grow. Just recently, the creations of Minh Häusler, qualified photographer and former student of the Teshigahara family, have opened up new horizons. Now, formalism is tending to make way for a pleasing sense of melancholy from an art that is blooming with age.

So, does the future of Ikebana lie in afloral arrangements? In de-rangement? Or perhaps in trans-vegetalism? These questions will be answered between 31 May and 5 June next year, when Sōgetsu will present Flowers and Their Vases in the Takashimaya department store in Shinjuku. It’s a chance to gain a better understanding of an art which is clearly flowering in its prime.

©Minh Häusler

©Minh Häusler

©Minh Häusler

©Minh Häusler

©Minh Häusler

©Minh Häusler