Tag Archives: Sogetsu

2018 Ron Brown Demonstration & Workshop

Article by Susan Hoe

The “oohs” and “ahs” coming from the audience was in response to the creativity of Master Teacher Ron Brown’s dynamic Sogetsu demonstration. His expertise thrilled the ikebana enthusiasts at the Palo Verde Room in the Maricopa Cooperative Extension this past Saturday, October 6.

Working with materials that ranged from large monstera leaves and bright yellow sunflowers to the delicate and bright orange Mexican bird of paradise (a favorite of Ron’s), he deftly created eleven beautiful arrangements using a variety of flowers, leaves, palms, and dried materials. Some were ordered from Hawaii (including monstera leaves, red and pink torch gingers, birds of paradise, and pale-colored anthuriums), while others were gathered from the nearby yards of Retta Marconi-Dooly and Carol Brecker, with local florists filling in the rest.

Since the art of ikebana focuses not just on the floral materials but how well they harmonize with the container, Ron selected a wide array of vessels, some traditional (such as a round, low suiban), others modern, and still others wholly original.

With an uncanny talent for turning mundane simple objects into exciting new receptacles or accents for ikebana arrangements, Ron’s ability was front and center as he used unique containers that he had constructed out of living as well as inorganic materials. One uncommon container that he featured was made from a very pretty lace placemat.

Another original creation that excited the audience was a trio of bamboo “vases” Ron created by partially splitting lengths of black bamboo and connecting them together to form a set of linear vessels. The small hollow bamboo opening at the top of each structure was filled with water so he could arrange a colorful spray of floral materials in each one to cap off the tall slim stems of the split bamboo.

Ron also created three miniature arrangements in tiny glass bottles, which he loosely wrapped with colored bendable wires for interest. He placed a single blossom (including a yellow mini pom, a purple mini carnation allium, and an orange Mexican bird of paradise) in each bottle, which he feels “forces” the viewer to look closely and appreciate the delicate features of each single bloom—an experience they may miss when the same flowers are used in bunches on a larger arrangement.

In contrast, his largest piece was a spectacular five-foot structure that was built upon a metal frame (made by artist Ping Wei). Selecting diverse materials that ranged from dried brown palm tree bark to succulent green fire sticks, red and pink torch gingers, and vivid birds of paradise, the arrangement provided a rousing end to his demonstration.

A light lunch was served, and materials (including horsetail reeds, hala and flax leaves plus a perfect, single anthurium) were passed out for the workshop portion of the program. Attendees created their own arrangements using either an upright or low bowl container. Following the technique that Ron demonstrated, they inserted wires through their hollow horsetail reeds, which allowed them to bend and manipulate the thin reeds into a myriad of new three-dimensional shapes. Hala and flax leaves were creatively added to each arrangement, which was completed by the perfect placement of the single anthurium.

As part of the ikebana study process, Sensei Ron took the time to evaluate every arrangement, tweaking the students’ work while explaining why and how the pieces could be improved—a great learning exercise.

When the day ended, all attendees left with a beautiful arrangement they had each created along with a renewed and profound sense of what is possible in the art of ikebana.t of the single anthurium.

The “oohs” and “ahs” coming from the audience was in response to the creativity of Master Teacher Ron Brown’s dynamic Sogetsu demonstration. His expertise thrilled the ikebana enthusiasts at the Palo Verde Room in the Maricopa Cooperative Extension this past Saturday, October 6.

Working with materials that ranged from large monstera leaves and bright yellow sunflowers to the delicate and bright orange Mexican bird of paradise (a favorite of Ron’s), he deftly created eleven beautiful arrangements using a variety of flowers, leaves, palms, and dried materials. Some were ordered from Hawaii (including monstera leaves, red and pink torch gingers, birds of paradise, and pale-colored anthuriums), while others were gathered from the nearby yards of Retta Marconi-Dooly and Carol Brecker, with local florists filling in the rest.

Since the art of ikebana focuses not just on the floral materials but how well they harmonize with the container, Ron selected a wide array of vessels, some traditional (such as a round, low suiban), others modern, and still others wholly original.

With an uncanny talent for turning mundane simple objects into exciting new receptacles or accents for ikebana arrangements, Ron’s ability was front and center as he used unique containers that he had constructed out of living as well as inorganic materials. One uncommon container that he featured was made from a very pretty lace placemat.

Another original creation that excited the audience was a trio of bamboo “vases” Ron created by partially splitting lengths of black bamboo and connecting them together to form a set of linear vessels. The small hollow bamboo opening at the top of each structure was filled with water so he could arrange a colorful spray of floral materials in each one to cap off the tall slim stems of the split bamboo.

Ron also created three miniature arrangements in tiny glass bottles, which he loosely wrapped with colored bendable wires for interest. He placed a single blossom (including a yellow mini pom, a purple mini carnation allium, and an orange Mexican bird of paradise) in each bottle, which he feels “forces” the viewer to look closely and appreciate the delicate features of each single bloom—an experience they may miss when the same flowers are used in bunches on a larger arrangement.

In contrast, his largest piece was a spectacular five-foot structure that was built upon a metal frame (made by artist Ping Wei). Selecting diverse materials that ranged from dried brown palm tree bark to succulent green fire sticks, red and pink torch gingers, and vivid birds of paradise, the arrangement provided a rousing end to his demonstration.

A light lunch was served, and materials (including horsetail reeds, hala and flax leaves plus a perfect, single anthurium) were passed out for the workshop portion of the program. Attendees created their own arrangements using either an upright or low bowl container. Following the technique that Ron demonstrated, they inserted wires through their hollow horsetail reeds, which allowed them to bend and manipulate the thin reeds into a myriad of new three-dimensional shapes. Hala and flax leaves were creatively added to each arrangement, which was completed by the perfect placement of the single anthurium.

Student Workshop Photos

9th Annual Ikebana Exhibit – 2018

Thursday, January 25:

Artists build and install their designs.

This is a unique opportunity to observe the process of Ikebana creation as the artists prepare their displays.

Friday, January 26:

Artist Guided Tours and information booth

  • Sogetsu Ikebana information booth with demonstrations and make your own ikebana

  • Pottery booth by Ping Wei

Saturday, January 27:

Live Ikebana presentation. Tea Service in the Tea House Garden

  • 9 am – 10 am Garden Opens for Members Only Complimentary Breakfast Available (served until 10 AM)

  • 10:00 am to 4:00 pm Ikebana information booth with demonstrations and make your own ikebana.

  •  Pottery booth by Ping Wei

  • 11 am – noon Fun with Ikebana Presentation by Carol Becker

  • 11:00 -3:00pm Tea Service

  • 12:30 pm Tours by Ikebana Instructors/Artist

Sunday, January 28:

  • Live Music Performance, information booth

  • 10:00 to 4:00 Ikebana information booth with demonstrations and make your own ikebana

  • 11 am – noon Large Installation Demonstration by Ping Wei

  • 12:30 pm Tours by Ikebana Instructors/Artists

  • 2:00 -3:00pm Chamber Music by Trio Azul will perform. Traditional Japanese and chamber music (Carol Brecker, flute; Seongim Moon, violin; Janet Millard, cello)

  • Ikebana information booth with demonstrations and make your own ikebana

  • Pottery booth by Ping Wei

Ikebana Gone Wild Exhibition

“Ikebana Gone Wild” is the second annual Ikebana Exhibition at On The Edge Gallery. The exhibit features Ikebana floral arrangements in self made pottery, created under the direction of Vickie Morrow.

Carol Brecker, with students and colleagues of the Sogetsu School in Tokyo, present arrangements with fresh branches and flowers in the floral art style of Japan. Motto: “Anyone can arrange ikebana with any materials anywhere in the world.”

A large free-standing arrangement of branches, pipes, and unusual objects, created by Carol Brecker, greets visitors to On the Edge Gallery during the exhibition.

A large free-standing arrangement of branches, pipes, and unusual objects, created by Carol Brecker, greets visitors to On the Edge Gallery during the exhibition.

CAROL BRECKER teaches Sogetsu Ikebana in her Paradise Valley studio, is Chairperson for the Sonoran Desert Sogetsu Study Group, and is the curator of the exhibit. Her tall, elegant, bronze glazed nagieri vase evokes the image of a draping kimono.

WANDA COLLINS is an ikebana teacher in Queen Creek and a floral arranging judge. “Two Seasons in Arizona” is a curving half and half vase representing end of summer and into autumn with dried Arizona Rosewood for fall and desert broom for summer. “Unexpected Design” began with a rock in mind and evolved into industrial slag instead. The design suggests wild-like/native plant materials found in such areas.

RETTA MARCONI-DOOLEY teaches in Sun Lakes. The glazing on her two containers was “out of my comfort zone” but opens the door to contemporary ikebana designs to really show off the containers. The red/black/white curved and angular moribana (shallow) vase is brilliant. She combines floral and striking unconventional materials for this Ikebana Gone Wild theme.

SUSAN HOE created a bronzed S-Curve shaped vase that has two separate floral compartments that make it a two-in-one vase. She complements it with an array of seasonal blooms and greenery.

LUCY SAMUELS displays fall foliage and flowers in her bright turquoise, gracefully curved, and overlapping tall nagieri style vase.

Ikebana Gone Wild Exhibition

“Ikebana Gone Wild” is the second annual Ikebana Exhibition at On The Edge Gallery. The exhibit features Ikebana floral arrangements in self made pottery, created under the direction of Vickie Morrow.

Carol Brecker, with students and colleagues of the Sogetsu School in Tokyo, present arrangements with fresh branches and flowers in the floral art style of Japan. Motto: “Anyone can arrange ikebana with any materials anywhere in the world.”

A large free-standing arrangement of branches, pipes, and unusual objects, created by Carol Brecker, greets visitors to On the Edge Gallery during the exhibition.

CAROL BRECKER teaches Sogetsu Ikebana in her Paradise Valley studio, is Chairperson for the Sonoran Desert Sogetsu Study Group, and is the curator of the exhibit. Her tall, elegant, bronze glazed nagieri vase evokes the image of a draping kimono.

WANDA COLLINS is an ikebana teacher in Queen Creek and a floral arranging judge. “Two Seasons in Arizona” is a curving half and half vase representing end of summer and into autumn with dried Arizona Rosewood for fall and desert broom for summer. “Unexpected Design” began with a rock in mind and evolved into industrial slag instead. The design suggests wild-like/native plant materials found in such areas.

RETTA MARCONI-DOOLEY teaches in Sun Lakes. The glazing on her two containers was “out of my comfort zone” but opens the door to contemporary ikebana designs to really show off the containers. The red/black/white curved and angular moribana (shallow) vase is brilliant. She combines floral and striking unconventional materials for this Ikebana Gone Wild theme.

SUSAN HOE created a bronzed S-Curve shaped vase that has two separate floral compartments that make it a two-in-one vase. She complements it with an array of seasonal blooms and greenery.

LUCY SAMUELS displays fall foliage and flowers in her bright turquoise, gracefully curved, and overlapping tall nagieri style vase.

Come see designs in self made pottery by five of our Ikebana of Arizona members: Carol Brecker, Wanda Collins, Retta Marconi-Dooley, Susan Hoe, and Lucy Samuels. Enjoy visiting with the artists, wine, and appetizers during the art walk on Thursday evening, Nov. 9, 2017. Or visit Friday and Sat. 10:00 to 5:00 on Nov. 10 and 11.

2016 Holiday Workshop

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The Holiday workshop, held at the North Mountain Visitors Center, was a great way to wrap up 2016. Tasty snacks were shared, while creative juices flowed. Carol Brecker lead the workshop, using aspen branches, pine, red lilies, red and silver roses, amaranth and baby’s breath to create arrangements that expressed holiday feelings and wishes.

Continue to see a sample of arrangements.

Continue reading 2016 Holiday Workshop

Christmas Demonstration & Workshop

SATURDAY, DECEMBER 5, 2015

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Holiday Workshop by Retta marconi-Dooley, Sogetsu School

Location: Kate Secrest’s Clubhouse
Stonegate Clubhouse

The Christmas demonstration by Retta was fabulous as always. Lots of beautiful flowers were provided for the members and guests to work with and enjoy. It had a Western Christmas theme. The first five photo’s are from Retta’s Demo and the rest are some of the members creations.

Continue reading Christmas Demonstration & Workshop