From Bonzai To Moribana - The Extraordinary Artforms Of The Japanese!
Japanese create bonsai with a great passion while adhering strictly to the rules of nature. The trees are sturdily anchored to the ground and ascend regally in harmonious pots. A bonsai is formally displayed on a stand in a tokonoma display alcove and a display accessory will complement the bonsai, along with a hanging print to complete the presentation theme and artistic arrangement.
Bonsai trees can be found in many shapes, sizes and of course the trees themselves are almost unlimited. Orange trees are particularly nice when made into bonsai trees. Their dark green leaves and tiny white blossoms provide beautiful contrast, when they bear the little oranges however is when you really begin to marvel at this perfect miniaturization of one of the giants of the forests.
Bonsai is not the only flower arrangement that Japanese are famous for. The ikebana plays an integral part in their floral designs and art culture. While western style arrangements emphasize size and multitude of flowers, the Japanese emphasize the linearity of the arrangement in Ikebana, choosing to create harmony and rhythm in the perpendicularity of their arrangements. This art has gone on to include the vase, stems, leaves and branches in the arrangement as well as the flowers.
In addition to Ikebana there is the Rikka or standing flower style which embodies the magnificence of nature. There are also simpler styles of flower arrangement called nageire or cha-bana, which literally means 'tea flowers' as the arrangement is often seen during the tea ceremony. This is a very naturalistic style of arranging flowers as they are made to appear as they would in nature, to the best of the florists' abilities. In the last hundred years the moribana style appeared, mostly due to the western influence on Japan. The moribana style translates as 'pile of flowers' and is exactly what it sounds like, this style can be adapted for both formal and informal occasions. So as you can see while Bonsai may be the most popularly known gardening tradition of the Japanese, it is not the last word in flower arranging in Japan.
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