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Kado or the Japanese Flower Arrangement is an art that can strongly express the beauty of Japan’s four seasons. Kado is also called as Ikebana and both have the same meaning. From now, let’s look at the world of Kado and learn its history and various types of school!

What is Kadō?

Kadō

Kado, which is also called as Ikebana, is a traditional Japanese culture. It is said that by practicing this culture, you are able to polish your mind. In Kado, people combine various types of flowers and plant and tries to represent the beautiful scenery of Japan’s four season. There are also many types of school where you can practice you flower arrangement skills. It is different from the western-style, where they create a unity of the same colors. In fact, they do the opposite where they combine different types of flowers and plant and create their original art.

History

  • Asuka~Nanbokucho Period

At the same time the Buddhism came to Japan, a tradition called Kuge where people would offer flowers to the God spread throughout Japan. In the Kuge, people used to represent the beauty of the four seasons.

  • Muromachi Period

During this period, the Japanese architecture began and was called the Higashiyama culture. This culture encouraged that the flowers must been seen from the front. They had a tradition of placing the flowers in a vase-like vessel and called it Tatebana. Then, Ikeno Bousenkei 池坊専慶 developed the culture of Ikebana.

  • Azuchimomoyama~Edo Period

In 1594, Ikenobo Senko 池坊専好 made a famous flower art arrangement that was called the Osuna Mono. In the mid- Edo Period, the culture of Kado was used as an entertainment between the samurai’s and the aristocrats.

  • Meiji~Showa Period

In the 1872年, Ikenobo Senko became a Kado professor in a all-girls school in Kyoto. The Kado became more familiar with women since then. Moreover, in the 1889, Ikenobo transferred school in Tokyo. The western-style culture was introduced to Japan at that time and so it inspired more details of the Kado.

There Are Various Types of Schools?

Today, many Kado schools are existing and it is said that more than 300 schools have been built ever since.

Among them are

  1. 池坊 Ikenobou
  2. 小原流 Ohararyuu
  3. 草月流 Sougetsuryuu

these are the 3 largest schools of Kado. There are various characteristics in each schools and they also have their own original styles.
Let’s further learn about these 3 school!

  1. 池坊 Ikenobou:In 1462, Ikenobou Senko established this school, which became the most famous Kado school in Japan. He believes that peace and beauty is the most important aspects of Kado and he arranges them by keeping their natural forms. He also made the Tachibana, Ikebana and Jiyuubana famous in the world of Kado!
  2. 小原流 Ohararyuu:In the 19th century, this school was established by Ohara Unshin. They mostly used vessels with large openings and placed the flowers in a basin.  This style was inspired by the western designs that were introduced to Japan at this period.
  3. 草月流 Sougetsuryuu:In 1927, Teshigahara Soufu established this school. His teachings were mainly to have originality and freedom over one’s flower arrangement. This is why most of the flower arrangements in this school are unique and they still keep on seeking for fresh and new ideas.

Lastly

華道

Kado has a long history and many feel a familiarity to this culture from the ancient periods.  There are various school for Kado and each has their own characteristics. Which of the schools did you like? By all means, we also hope that you will someday experience the culture of the Japanese Flower Arrangement; Kado.