NGV launches video series inspiring floral arrangements drawn from works in the Collection

NGV-Tawaraya-Sotatsu-Flowering-plants-of-the-four-seasonsThe National Gallery of Victoria has launched a new three-part instructional video series, inspiring audiences to create at-home floral arrangements inspired by art works from the NGV Collection.

In the series, audiences will learn the art of arranging flowers through the exploration of several different floral styles and seasonal bouquets, including Japanese ikebana, Australian native inspired compositions and working with florals which can be found in your own garden.

Featuring works drawn from the NGV Collection spanning several centuries, the series will explore the stories behind some of the NGV’s most significant floral inspired works by international and local artists. Curators will give insights into works by artists including Tawaraya Sotatsu, Margaret Preston, Rosslynd Piggott and Trevor Nickolls.

“We are delighted to bring audiences this series, which gives insight into some of the most popular floral works in the NGV Collection,” says Tony Ellwood AM, Director NGV. “Flowers and still life compositions have long been inspiration for artists to explore in their own painting practice and the symbolism behind these floral motifs. We hope these instructional videos also inspire our audience to pursue their own creative endeavours whilst at home,” Mr Ellwood.

Presented in partnership with Flowers Vasette, the series aims to share tips and tricks with how to make the most out of your at home floral creations. For more information, visit: for details.

Image: Tawaraya Sotatsu (school of), Flowering plants of the four seasons (Shikisoka zu)(c. 1630-1640) © National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Felton Bequest, 1907

Episode One: Japanese Ikebana Arrangements
The first how-to episode is inspired by Japanese ikebana, the traditional Japanese art of floral arrangement. This episode takes inspiration from the NGV Collection work Flowering plants of the four seasons c.1630-1640, a six panel Japanese folding screen by the studio of Tawaraya Sotatsu.

Assistant Curator of Asian Art, Annika Aitken will give viewers an insight into the history behind the work and the extraordinary depictions of ikebana featured on this impressive six panel screen. Hokuto Takase from Flowers Vasette demonstrates how to create ikebana, inspired by Sotatsu’s work to create a floral arrangement using flowers from all four seasons.

Episode Two: Native Australian Florals
In episode two (available Friday 19 June), Curator of Australian Painting Beckett Rozentals explores renowned Australian artist, Margaret Preston’s much-loved painting, Flannel flowers, 1938. In this episode we are also joined by Curator of Indigenous Art, Myles Russell-Cook, who explores indigenous artist Trevor Nickolls’ work Still life Venetian vase created in 1990.

Russell-Cook explores Nickolls contemporary practice and his unique style, through this captivating painting. Sonya Wilson from Flowers Vasette demonstrates two ways viewers at home can create simple yet striking arrangements using seasonal Australian native florals, inspired by the works of Preston and Nickolls from the NGV Collection.

Episode Three: Garden Arrangements
Joined by special guest and renowned Australian artist Rosslynd Piggott, this episode (available Friday 26 June) focuses on Piggott’s work Unfolding flower-cloud space no. 2, 2005-2006 and the ways in which this work is inspired by Japanese cherry blossom.

Collaboratively, Rosslynd Piggott and Hokuto Takase from Flowers Vasette take inspiration from the large-scale painting, the pair will arrange florals inspired by Piggott’s work and her ongoing fascination with flowers. Curator of Contemporary Art, Jane Devery will share with audiences the themes and inspirations behind Piggott’s work and its importance in Australian art.