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By Robert Harkins, HistoryMiami

So far, the HistoryMiami South Florida Folklife Center has presented two programs featuring our current resident artist Mieko Kubota, a master of Japanese ikebana (flower arranging). On September 29th, Mieko created unique arrangements and also explained the philosophy behind her Zen-influenced style at a special ikebana presentation. While audience members delighted in experiencing her artistry, they also enjoyed live, traditional Japanese music played on the koto and bamboo flute. Last month, on October 27th, Mieko taught a master class on the art of ikebana. Under her guidance, class participants created flower arrangements of their own.

Hot on the heels of this master class is Mieko’s final program, called Family Fun Day: Japanese Traditions. In conjunction with the Consulate-General of Japan in Miami and the Miami-Dade County Public Library System, HistoryMiami will host this free, family-friendly festival on Saturday, November 10th from 12 – 5 PM. Featuring Mieko, this outdoor event will celebrate the traditional arts and culture of Japan.

Event attendees can experience a variety of traditions, including calligraphy and the wearing of kimonos. The young (and young at heart!) can arrange an ikebana piece with members of the Miami chapter of Ikebana International, create origami figures, and witness Walt Disney World Resort’s Candy Miyuki make candy sculptures. Additionally, visitors can see the traditional taiko drumming of Fushu Daiko, play Japanese video games at the nearby Main Library, and participate in other Japanese-themed activities over the course of the afternoon.

The HistoryMiami South Florida Folklife Center is proud to present these programs, all of which are part of the Heritage Spotlight Series, an artist-in-residence program. The series is funded in part by the Knight Foundation, the Institute of Museum and Library Services, the National Endowment for the Arts, the State of Florida’s Division of Cultural Affairs, and the Florida Humanities Council.

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