“Ka to ka” is the name of the exhibition of Ikebana that was held at Daimaru Museum Kyoto, on the 6th floor of the Kyoto Daimaru Department Store, in Shijo-dori. The purpose was to encourage young artists working in Kyoto.

Before showing you some pictures of the exhibition, let me introduce you a bit what is Ikebana. Ikebana is written with the kanjis of 生 (“i”), meaning life, and 花 (“hana”), flower, and can be translated as “giving life to flowers, arrange flowers”. There’s another less common way to refer to it, that is to say “kadō” (in Japanese 華道, “way of flowers”), because it is considered one of the Zen arts of refinement along with the tea ceremony and incense appreciation.

It was introduced in Japan in the sixth century from Chinese Buddhist missionaries who used to give flowers to Buddha as a sign of devotion. The first school was Ikenobō, founded in 7th century. Even if there are different schools of thought, ikebana is realized following the concept of hanakotoba, “language of the flower”, so the purpose is to convey a message through the way flowers are arranged. For the final arrangement not only flowers and branches are essential, but other materials as well such as plastics, metal, wood are used and combined in a harmonious way.

The name “Ka to Ka” suggests the theme of the exhibition, Ikebana and Japanese confectionery. The first “ka” stands for the reading of the kanji of “kadō”, while the other comes from “ka-shi”, sweets. “Ka to ka”was the result of the cooperation between ikebana and Japanese confectionery artists. It took place from November 1st to 6th and 66 ikebana arrangements were exposed, along with the sweets created by four different Japanese confectionery shops, that is to say Oimatsu, Sasayaiori, Tawarayayoshitomi, Tsuruyayoshinobu.

The creations were exposed in different days, 33 from 1st to 3rd November, 33 from 4th to 6th and they were arranged in sections, each one of them was given a title. To make myself clearer, here are a map of the exhibition and the names of the artists who took part

Among all the creations the ones that captured my attention where the ones in which red prevailed, cause I think they matched the atmosphere surrounding Kyoto during this season. If you couldn’t go to the exhibition here are some pictures I took