The Japanese Way of Tea and Flowers

May 29, 2021, 2:30 PM — 4:00 PM

Spend an afternoon immersed in the beauty and symbolism embodied in the classical Japanese arts of refinement, chado (the way of tea), and kado (the way of flowers). We will explore these through discussion and demonstrations of ikebana (flower arranging), chabana (tea flowers), and chanoyu (tea ceremony). The latter will be a chakai, an informal tea gathering where all guests will be offered a cup of matcha (made with powdered green tea) and traditional sweets, with a tin of Harney & Sons matcha to take home.

At their core, these classical Japanese arts of refinement have much in common with Innisfree. Rooted in Buddhist and even Shinto ideas, they can all be viewed as exercises in mindfulness, moving meditation where each gesture is considered and intentional. This description of the tea ceremony could just as easily describe the garden at Innisfree:

The spiritual essence of chanoyu (tea ceremony) is a sharing in tranquility, simplicity of taste, and muted stillness of natural beauty. The tearoom is the setting, but the tea spirit lies in understanding and sharing the mutual moment of peaceful communication between host, guest, and the quiet surroundings. Chanoyu, by becoming a reflection of inner quiescence, humbly offers new hope—a moment of peace among all human beings partaking in the simple, yet often forgotten appreciation of repose in a troubled world. (Soshitsu Sen XV, Chanoyu: The Urasenke Tradition of Tea)

Program leaders:
Hazue Tamura Rogers has been studying Sogetsu Ryu ikebana for over 40 years and giving ikebana demonstrations for 30 years. She has been studying tea at the Urasenke Chanoyu Center for 30 years.

Michael McKenna lived and worked in Japan for 12 years and continues the relationship through his love of Japanese gardens, chanoyu and the language.

Mike Harney is the master tea buyer, blender, and Vice President of Harney & Sons. Mike is a published author and educator who loves to scour the globe meeting with tea producers from all the major tea regions, looking for the best teas to deliver to his customers.

Assisting with tea ceremony:
Somi Suzuki, Urasenke chanoyu teacher
Sosi Kanatsu
Miho Tokuoka
Mayumi Yamaoka
Eiko Nakamara
Yukie Shumistu
Miyoko Kakinuma

Assisting with ikebana:
Allison Canton

$45 Innisfree members; $50 general public
With thanks to our partners, Harney & Sons Fine Teas

Register here.