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What is Ikebana?
Ikebana is the Japanese art of flower arrangement and one of the traditional arts of Japan. Ikebana is much more than floral decoration. It is an art just like painting, calligraphy, sculpture and bonsai are arts. Ikebana has specified principles and creative theories; it requires highly developed technical skills and is a creative means of expression. It has a recorded history that goes back for more than 600 years. Ikebana’s beginnings are traced to the introduction of Buddhism to Japan in the 6th century when offerings of flowers were placed on the altar, and later in containers, in honor of Buddha. Over the centuries, ikebana evolved from the temple to the castle and, eventually, to the Japanese home. Many different styles and schools of ikebana developed along the way. Today, there are over 2,000 different schools of ikebana. They include both classical and modern avant-garde styles.
What is Ikebana International ?
Ikebana International is a non-profit, cultural organization dedicated to the promotion and appreciation of the art of ikebana. Our goal is to strengthen relationships among teachers and students of ikebana with a deeper purpose of establishing relationships among all peoples of the world through their mutual love of nature. The late Ellen Gordon Allen founded the organization in 1956 with the motto: Friendship through Flowers. Today, there are 161 chapters of Ikebana International in over 50 countries/areas with a membership of approximately 7,600 persons
The Washington, D.C. Chapter No.1 is proud to be the first chapter of Ikebana International established in 1956 outside of Tokyo Japan. Today we have over 240 dedicated members, including many talented teachers from across the D.C. metropolitan area. Our members enjoy the benefits of special events, workshops, local Area Workshops, demonstrations, exhibiting at the Annual event at the U.S. National Arboretum and much more. Many of our activities are open to the public. We invite you to become a member and to join us at our next public event and learn more about the beautiful art of ikebana.