50 Golden Years of Sogetsu in Australia and New Zealand

Posted: 15 April 2009 ()

50 Golden Years of Sogetsu Australia and New Zealand banner

It is over a year since we celebrated 50 Golden Years of Sogetsu in Australia and New Zealand yet it is still very fresh in my mind.

The Iemoto’s presentation on stage was an event many in the audience still speak about with the excitement of seeing such a spectacular work of art. To enjoy some of the special moments of the demonstration visit the YouTube clips or browse through the eighty images members’ works at the exhibition

To purchased the the un-cropped high quality version of photographs from the Members’ Exhibition please order directly through the photographer. For information by downloading the link below.


The 50 Golden Years of Sogetsu – What an exciting week I had in Sydney in May 2010! It was on Wednesday, 19th May 2010 when the passion and energy of Iemoto Akane burst on to the stage in Sydney.  Her powerful and colourful demonstration was very very impressive, and thoroughly enthralled the big hall’s capacity audience.  I am sure Iemoto’s beautiful stage work will be remembered by the audience for a long time.
I was very lucky to be involved in such a spectacular event from Sunday, 15th May as a helper of the demonstration and to have a chance of learning the preparation that takes place backstage.  It might be hard for the audience to believe how much preparation is done beforehand and not seen on the stage.  I was particularly impressed by the expertise of Iemoto’s altelier staff from Tokyo.  Of course they are professional assistants to Iemoto and I have seen them many times on the stage, but I found, this time, by working together with them that their team work and efficient procedures were indeed “beautiful”.
I also enjoyed attending the two day workshops conducted by Iemoto.  It was an excellent opportunity to have Iemoto’s comments first hand, and also, to share the pleasure of learning Ikebana with many Sogetsu Ikebanists from various places around the world.  My Ikebana friends from Japan who participated in the workshop said that they enjoyed using the materials not readily available in Japan.  I too enjoyed using Aussie materials.
Thanks to the years of extremely hard work by the Committee Members, we were able to have such an enjoyable and memorable week in Sydney.  Congratulations for a great event!
Takako Martin STA Auckland Branch

The 50th Golden Years of Sogetsu Australia and New Zealand Event is a success, congratulations to all the committee members for their contribution and hard work to make this happened, a very well done!

Iemoto Akane Teshigahara’s demonstration on 19/5 at Wesley Centre was Stunning, colourful and spectacular, such an eye opening installation that I have never seen!

I have attended workshop A & B, the challenge that I have is the unknown containers, flowers and leaves that I will have during the workshops, I was lucky to obtain Iemoto’s left over materials from the demonstration, I guess it’s the reciprocation to accept the cleaning up job.

A selection of containers and the calligraphy of Sofu Teshigahara donated by Norman Sparnon’s to Art Gallery of NSW were very unusual and a must to see for us from Sogetsu School.
As one of 9 team members from Auckland, I appreciate the support we have from Takako Martin and Keiko Murakami, they make my Sydney trip very worthwhile and memorable. The Meriton Pitt Street Apartment is very centralised and easy access to our exhibition venue, shopping [for florists particularly] eating etc are so handy for all.

One day I would like to see the Camellia “Reflecting Wave” planted in honour of Norman Sparnon will be saleable in NZ.
Iris Cheng, STA Auckland Branch

First of all, a very big congratulation to the success of The 50 Golden Years of Sogetsu. The hard work “behind the scenes” over many many months by the Committee Members has blossomed in full bloom during the exciting week in Sydney.

I thoroughly enjoyed the Iemoto Akane’s stage arrangement. What a spectacular stage performance, if I may. How exciting to see the empty black stage emerged into such a colourful Sogetsu display. I also enjoyed how two men split the bamboo, with the emergence of white bordered blue colour, which was an unexpected surprise. Also, it was an excellent idea for Iemoto to create smaller arrangements using different part of the hall. This way, no body felt left out by the seating arrangements. I am sure the non-Sogetsu audience also enjoyed the afternoon.

To have direct comments by Iemoto at the workshops was an excellent opportunity to reinforce your understanding of the particular theme of the exercise. Also, it was certainly a challenge using Australian materials and “unknown” containers.

The week celebration gave opportunity to realise once again the global family of Sogetsu.
Keiko Murakami, Director STA Auckland Branch

Just to let you know that the group from Western Australia have returned home safely. We were all greatly inspired by our time in Sydney.

Everyone thoroughly enjoyed the experience, especially the demonstration and workshops. All the people involved with the organisation of the event are to be congratulated.
Alison Wright, Perth

What an amazing experience!

I was fortunate enough to attend the Installation Performance by the Grand Master of Sogetsu Ikebana at the Wesley Centre during the conference in Sydney in May. I was intrigued by the happenings on stage and stunned by the Iemoto and her assistants – absolute champions of their craft!

However the works on display by the “grass roots’ society members were equally as mesmerising.

Thank you for the opportunity to view such a display of creativity and originality.
Hilary Moxon, Bayview – Spectator

Congratulations to you and all the committee members for a well organised event.
I was inspired by the variety of arrangements and recognised many of the lessons in the new books.  In events of this high standard it is hard to pick one that stands out the most.
The display by  members from Wellington New Zealand is still in my mind. The paua shell containers to the landscape depicting the Southern Alps of the South Island to the mountains and Geysers of central North Island was impressive as was the table display at the Celebration Dinner , which I am going to try at home.
Three weeks after the event I see a closing down sale and buy 4 more containers.  The bug never leaves you.
Karen Green, Townsville

_Congratulations on such a wonderful event, we hope that you and your committee have had time to catch breath and appreciate all the work that you did.

The Exhibition venue was great, the size was good and the different rooms made for interesting viewing. The staging for the Iemoto demonstration was excellent, we know the logistics were difficult for those involved but from the point of view of the audience the experience was fantastic. Lyn appreciated being a helper at the last moment and enjoyed her experience immensely.

We were absolutely rapt in the workshops. We thoroughly enjoyed working with Akane as we felt that she showed her true dedication, her critiques were worth listening to and she was so positive which lifted everyone’s spirits and made it all worthwhile. We wish we had participated in all the workshops.

Once again, congratulations on a wonderful event.
Lyn Leslie Director, Ray King Secretary, Christchurch Branch.

As always it was wonderful to catch up with Sogetsu members at the Celebration and share personal and ikebana news.

It was a great pleasure to meet Iemoto Akane and have the privilege of working on her team for her Demonstration. Akane’s natural and friendly personality shone through every aspect of the week, in particular during her demonstration and at the workshops.

Iemoto Akane has brought a different dimension to Sogetsu leading us into a new and exciting era of Sogetsu Ikebana.
Yvonne Correll, Sogetsu Ikebana -Adelaide Branch

To view sections of The Installation Performance at the Wesley Centre 19th June 2010 on YouTube.

Iemoto Akane Teshigahara. Sydney May 2010. Arrangement #1
Iemoto Akane Teshigahara. Sydney May 2010. Arrangement #2
Iemoto Akane Teshigahara. Sydney May 2010. Arrangement #3
Iemoto Akane Teshigahara. Sydney May 2010. Arrangement #4
Iemoto Akane Teshigahara. Sydney May 2010. Arrangement #5
Iemoto Akane Teshigahara. Sydney May 2010. Arrangement #6
Iemoto Akane Teshigahara. Sydney May 2010. Arrangement #7
Iemoto Akane Teshigahara. Sydney May 2010. Arrangement #8

If you visit the website of Sogetsu Headquarters, Japan you will be treated to wonderful snapshots of The Iemoto’s visit to Sydney. Place your cursor on the word Sogetsu at the end of this sentence and it will take you directly to the link. Sogetsu,


Ms. Wong, Mr. S. Yu, Mr. and Mrs. C Cranfield, Mrs. E. Angell, Victorian Sogetsu Branch, Jim Croft Studios, Bondi Junction, Mr. and Mrs. P. Clinch, Mr. and Mrs. L. Hall, Mr. and Mrs. N. Rasmussen, Greenwich Point Beauty Therapy, Hoyts, The Mandarin Centre, Blue Mountains Books, Ikebana International Sydney Chapter, Ms. M. Beer and Ms. M. Goldsmith, Herbies Spices, Mr. B. de Crummere, Mr. Y. Umemura, Mr. B. Cherry, Mrs. G. White, Mr. S. Fambart, Mr. D. Hall, Instant Colour Press Canberra, Mr. D. McInnes, Ms. L. Hart, Mrs. M. Chan, Ms. G. Lugosi, Mr. D. Barsby, Mr. M. Vinciguerra, Ms. L. Victoria, Mrs. M. Ako, Mrs B. Lawrence, Mr. B. Trudeau, Mrs. M. Bennett, Mr. and Mrs. W. Block, Mrs. M. Eade, Ms. M. Esson, Ms. A. Drover, Floreligium. Mrs. C. Klerkx, Mrs.. Marin, Dr. R Lee, Mr. W.S. Kim, Mrs. U. Pagels, Mrs. V. Paul, Mrs. H. Moxon, Ms. K. Kitamura, Mrs. N. Pienovi, Studio 2017, Mr. P. Signorelli, Sydney Flower Markets, Ms. P. Walker, Ms. F. Wang, Ms. Q. Wang.