The Austin Ikebana Study Group was founded by Isamu Taniguchi (circa 1902-1992), who started building the Taniguchi Japanese Garden when he was 70 years old. Ikebana is more than simply arranging flowers-its Japanese characters mean “giving life to flowers.” This art form has spiritual and philosophical roots, where the relationship between every flower, stem, branch, leaf, and even container expresses a balanced and harmonious nature. The feelings of the arranger play a key role as well. Members rotate leading demonstrations and workshops. Because members have trained in various schools of Ikebana, including Ohara, Sogetsu, Ikenobo, and Ichiyo, they bring a rich atmosphere of learning and growth to the meetings. This becomes a contemplative practice of expressing gentleness and elegance through the art of flower arrangement. Membership is limited to approximately 20 persons, and a person must have had at least one year of Ikebana classes before becoming a member of this study group.