As a child Mary Jane Sasser helped her father plant, cut and arrange flowers. Over lemonade he would bring out the book of beautiful Japanese flower arrangements. Together they would try and figure out the magic of those arrangements, the book was written in Japanese.
30 years later before Instagram, Google or Facebook, in 2003, Mary Jane found the Sangetsu School of Ikebana and her teacher Professor Helena Arouca. Two years later the Sangetsu School of Takoma Park put on an exhibit using recycled materials such as window shutters, tire irons and egg shells as vases. Participating in that exhibit gave Mary Jane a broader definition of a vase and ignited her passion for the technical skill required to share the beauty of nature through ikebana. In 2012, she earned her Instructors certification Since then Mary Jane has taught ikebana to football players, senior citizens and inner city children.
Her work has been exhibited at the National Arboretum and the Japanese Embassy in Washington DC. Mary Jane loves a beautiful vase but she loves seeing people’s eyes light up when they re-imagine a container into a vase with their own unique creative vision even more!
Rekha Reddy First Master, Ohara Ikebana presented “Stories From the Land of Spirituality, Ikebana from India”. She studied under Grandmaster, Horya Meena Anantnarayan and her mother, Shamala Y.R. Reddy. She has been teaching Ikebana, holding workshops, and demonstrations for over 25 years.
She received the ‘Commendation Award’ from the Japanese Consul General Chennai in 2015. She is passionate about spreading Ikebana, promoting an understanding of Japanese culture and friendship between Japan and India.
It's Fall!!!...Time to Create Dried Materials with Fresh Flowers...with Interesting Expression of Color, Ichiyo's Compound Form as well as the use of Shikimono
Laurie Wareham, a Certified Instructor & Master in The Ichiyo School, presented seasonal arrangements, Ichiyo principles, and using Shikimono.
Ikebana members Eveyln Klumb of the Ikenobo school, Linda L. Taylor of the Ohara school, Shirely Woodle of the Ichiyo school, Kumiko Suzuki of the Sogetsu school, and Grace Morris of the Sangetsu school presented arrangements that interpreted prints by artist Yoshiko Yamamoto.
Junko Liesfeld presented the history and art of Japanese Kimono and shared her personal kimono collection with the members.
Janice Whitehead(Ikenobo School), Judy Sheldon(Ohara School), Paula Nachman(Sogetsu School), Annette Ernst(Keika-Kazan School), Alice Lichfield(Ichiyo School) and Helena Arouca(Sangetsu School) presented a demonstration entitled "Six Ikebana Schools---A Members' Spring Showcase".
IOR member, Minh-Chau Truong presented a zoom demonstration entitled "Bamboo and Pine: The Art of Sumi-e and Inspiring Ikebana Arrangements". She has been taking classes with well known teachers in this field around US since 2008. She is a member of the Sumi-e Society of America, the Sumi-e Blue Heron Chapter in Norfolk.
IOR members, Annette Ernst, Diane Burgess, JoAnn McNabb and Minh-Chau made arrangements for the Sumi-e paints.
A video demonstration was shown. Laurie Wareham, Ichiyo Master from Elm Grove Wisconsin demonstrated arrangements incorporating natural and unnatural materials in the video demonstration.
The Memorial Celebration of the Life of Doris Roberts was held at Mr. & Mrs. Liesfeld's Japanese Garden on November 8, 2020. She had been a member of Ikebana of Richmond since 1968. She was President three times.
Libby Haynes, Jonin Sanyo of Sogetsu presented a demonstration entitled “Artfully Woven, The Beauty of Baskets”. She joined Ikebana of Richmond in 2006. She began studying in the Sogetsu School of Ikebana in 2006 under Etsuko Phillips and currently studies under Jane Redmon. She became a certified Sogetsu Instructor in 2012 and was promoted to the rank Jonin Sanyo in 2018. She conducted a workshop on the following day.