Azuma Makoto
Flower Messenger

東 信

Azuma Makoto Flower Messenger


Japan House London’s opening day, Friday 22 June, was celebrated by an interactive procession of flowers through the streets and green spaces of Kensington. Pioneering flower artist and botanical sculptor Azuma Makoto, in collaboration with London Flower School, created a version of Flower Messenger especially for the streets of London. Inspired by flower sellers during Japan’s Edo period (1603-1867), a troupe of thirty flower messengers visited Kensington’s cultural landmarks and creative neighbours, including the Design Museum, CASS ART, Royal Albert Hall the Serpentine’s Summer Pavilion and the Science Museum, on foot to meet our neighbours. Along the way, they greeted passers-by and presented them with flowers.

The Flower Messengers carried baskets of elaborate flower displays designed by Azuma Makoto and assembled with students at the London Flower School. 


The outfits worn by the Flower Messengers were inspired by the clothes worn by Edo period flower sellers, but revamped for the 21st century by one of the top denim makers in Japan, Dairec, who are based in Japan’s denim capital, Kojima in Okayama Prefecture.

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“Through the act of delivering flowers, I want ‘Flower Messenger’ to share as much joy as possible with as many people as possible to spread as much happiness as we can from Japan House London’s opening,” commented Azuma Makoto.  


The Flower Messengers set off from Japan House London and paraded down Kensington High Street, handing our flowers to surprised passers-by as they went. 


First stop was the Design Museum where they were greeted by Josephine Chanter, Director of Audiences, who welcomed Japan House to the neighbourhood. 


 Next stop was the nearby CASS ART where store manager Jurga Vilimaite came out to greet Azuma Makoto and the Flower Messengers. 



Strolling through Hyde Park the Flower Messengers surprised and delighted people relaxing in the sunny summer weather. 

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Some of the Flower Messengers popped in to the Serpentine Pavilion 2018 by Mexican architect Frida Escobedo where they were welcomed by Jacquie Rosenbach, the Serpentine Galleries’ Communications Coordinator. 


Parading down the museum-lined Exhibition Road the Flower Messengers met a group of school children from Eaton Square, Kensington. Here they happily display the blooms they received from the Flower Messengers. 

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A quick exchange outside the Victoria & Albert Museum on Exhibition Road.


Azuma Makoto presenting a flower to a young girl at the Albert Memorial in Kensington Gardens. 

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Inside the Science Museum with Alistair Otto, Head of Operations. 

Royal Albert Hall CEO Craig Hassall surrounded by Flower Messengers.


To celebrate the opening of Japan House São Paulo in May 2017, Azuma Makoto had Flower Messengers ride bicycles around the city’s streets while distributing flowers to people, while in London he chose to have the Messengers leisurely walk through the city’s streets and green spaces. Find out more about Azuma Makoto’s floral and botanical artworks here.