Wednesday, 23 August 2017

Ikebana Gallery Award 2017

We are very grateful to our wonderful judges who generously gave us their valuable input. 

Thank you Mr Ken Smith (Artist, Former Lecturer, Art, Design & Architecture, Monash University), Ms Lesley Kehoe (Lesley Kehoe Galleries), Ms Susan Renouf (Adjunct Professor, Fashion & Textiles, RMIT University), Dr Yoshiho Kobayashi (Associate Professor, Outemon University; President, International Society of Ikebana Studies), Ms Hiroe Swen (Ceramic Artist, Former Lecturer, Australia National University) and Dr Osamu Inoue (Associate Professor, Kyoto University of Art & Design; Vice President, International Society of Ikebana Studies).

Their contribution made this international award, the world's first online Ikebana competition truly unique. It is so rare for Ikebana students to be assessed and to receive comments from art specialists like our judges. Please visit the “Judges” page for their profiles.

We are pleased to announce that the winner of the 2017 Ikebana Galley Award is Kim Ta. The Ikebana Gallery Silver Award 2017 goes to Antonia, and the Ikebana Gallery Bronze Award goes to Elena. The top three students will receive a certificate from Ikebana Gallery.

Our judges were asked to choose three works out of the six finalists in the order of their preference and the results were as follows:
Mr Smith: 1. Kim, 2. Elena, 3. Antonia, 
Ms Kehoe: 1. Marisa, 2. Antonia, 3. Kim
Ms Renouf: 1. Kim, 2. Elena, 3. Antonia, 
Dr Kobayashi: 1. Kim, 2. Antonia, 3. Marisa, 
Ms Swen: 1. Elena,  2. Antonia, 3. Kim 

We allocated 3 points to the first choice, 2 to the second and 1 to the third. The results were 11 points for Kim
, 8 points for Antonia, and 7 points for Elena. 

Following are comments from our judges for each work.

Gold Award: Kim Ta (Melbourne, Australia)
Sogetsu School, Teacher - Shoso Shimbo

Mr Smith: A powerful composition of circles, rings and spheres that combines both harmony and contrast. Harmony through the repetition of these formal qualities, and contrast by the careful selection of different plant materials; large and small, green and white. The containing form continues the theme of energy and implied movement that is apparent within the plant arrangement.

Ms Kehoe: Kim’s work is bold, I love the asymmetry and the acknowledgement of season.  

Ms Renouf:  It is a pleasure to again participate in the judging of the Online Ikebana Gallery Award. I must say, I think the overall standard is higher this year. It is difficult to choose, but my selections are as follows: Kim. The muted blues, greens, and whites are so gentle and meditative, and I like the use of the circular shapes throughout. The choice of base is beautifully complimentary to the work.

Ms Swen: Green loops and pale green round flowers create a refreshing beauty that resonates with the ring form of the container. (輪の花器と共鳴する緑の輪と薄緑の丸い花が醸し出す爽やかな美)

Kim's Message: I am so happy to be one of the winners of the Ikebana Gallery Award 2017.
Three years ago, I fell in love with Ikebana at the first sight when I saw Mr Thaimaivan Thomas's Ikebana work. From that moment until now, Ikebana had became an indispensable part of my life. I'd like to say thank Mr Thaimaivan Thomas, who inspired and gave me some first Ikebana lessons. I'm also thankful from my heart to Shoso Shimbo Sensei. I am very lucky to have had the chance to learn Ikebana with the best teacher and Ikebana artist like you. Thank you all so much for this great honour!!!

Silver Award: Antonia Tzenova (Rome, Italy)
Sogetsu School, Teacher - Paola Belfiore 

Mr. Smith: This arrangement is an unusual organisation of organic forms displayed horizontally and delicately balanced on the geometry of the small and carefully placed container. The resultant dramatic cantilever construction restrains suggested movement.

Ms Kehoe: Antonia’s work is a joy to view, with most appealing elegant movement.

Ms Renouf: I like the form, and the choice of base to offset it.

Ms Swen: The horizontal floating leaves are calming but express the creator's liveliness.

Antonia's Message: Thank you so much for this prize, I am really happy and grateful. I would like also to say thank you to my teacher Paola Belfiore for having chosen the materials for this arrangement and for sharing with me her passion, inspiration and love for ikebana.

Bronze Award: Elena Iampolski (Melbourne, Australia)
Sogetsu School, Teacher - Shoso Shimbo

Mr Smith: Another work of bold contrasts in both colour and form. With colour specifically the contrast is between the warm grey of the branch form with its red leaves and the central cluster of white flowers. The contrast of form is also between these elements, the angularity of the branch and leaves in contrast to the softer circularity of the flower grouping. The resolution of all these contrasting tensions creates a powerful metaphor for transient existence.

Ms Renouf:  I am choosing this because of the beautiful flow of the branch, and its colour, offset by the contrasting white of the centre balancing flowers.

Ms. Swen: The colour coordination of white flowers and autumn leaves is poetic. Very skilful use of space. (中心の白い花、秋の色合いは詩的。空間の処理は非常に巧み )

Marisa Crestani
The Northern Italy Study Group, Teacher - Mario Sonsini

Ms Kehoe: I would like to congratulate all entrants. The standard of works increases each year, and I feel this year is the best so far. As always it is a difficult choice. Marisa’s work shows a considered conceptual approach along with a quite daring use of materials. It speaks to both traditional and contemporary elements of ikebana. 

Congratulations to the winners, and to the other finalists. Thank you to all the Ikebana students who have shared their works on our blog & Facebook page. We are looking forward to receiving more images of your works for the Ikebana Gallery Award 2018.