Astrological Aesthetics: December 2015 Horoscopes

A sculpture of a Sagittarius atop the south transept of the cathedral in Reims (photo by Vassil, via Wikimedia Commons)
A sculpture of a Sagittarius atop the south transept of the cathedral in Reims (photo by Vassil/Wikimedia Commons)

Hyperallergic’s horoscopes offer astrological advice for artists and art types, in art terms, every month.

Sagittarius (November 23–December 21)

Put yourself in the shoes of a dealer who has to pick work for a single-artist booth at a fair during Miami Art Week, Sagittarius. Can you imagine that level of stress? Can you?! You’re already thousands (or tens of thousands) of dollars in the hole just paying for the booth, and now you have to put all yours eggs in one basket. Pick the right artist and collectors will swarm you; pick wrong and you’ll strike out — you may even have to close up shop entirely. This predicament is not so dissimilar from your romantic forecast for the month: you’ll have the chance to meet the collector of your dreams, just make sure you’ve filled your booth with the type of art she likes — and that you haven’t already promised the work to someone else.

Capricorn (December 22–January 20)

Don’t be like Jeff Koons, Capricorn. Admittedly this advice is valid every month of the year, but in this particular instance we’re thinking of his current exhibition of famous paintings outfitted with shiny blue balls, which is without doubt one of the worst and weakest art shows of the last 15 years. The lesson to be taken from this particular Koonsian kalamity is this: don’t get lazy just because you think you’re ahead. There will be times in the coming weeks when you’ll have the impression that your goal is comfortably within reach, your competitors are far behind, and you’ll be tempted to slow down. If you do, the prize will slip through your hands and you’ll end up just like Koons — with a pile of fourth-rate knock-offs and blue balls.

Aquarius (January 21–February 19)

Which Kate Gilmore performance best matches your astrological forecast this month, Aquarius? Maybe it’s “Sudden as a Massacre” (2011), where four women in flower-print dresses claw clumps from a giant cube of clay and hurl them at a bright yellow wall? Or could it be “Wallflower” (2006), in which Gilmore throws the entire contents of her apartment from a mezzanine through a hole cut in the floor? Better yet, is it “Break of Day” (2010), in which Gilmore smashes dozens of clay pots of bright purple paint? If you answered any of the above, you chose wrong. The correct answer is 2012’s “Leak from the Top,” in which four performers try and fail to stop perforated buckets filled with gray paint from leaking. Everything you do in December will go a lot like that, so lay low until 2016.

Pisces (February 20–March 20)

Careful, Pisces, holiday party season is upon us. You will be tempted to put in an appearance at every exhibition opening, company shindig, benefit gala, silent auction, and year-end bash, but you must pace yourself. Social situations that could have an impact on your career probably won’t turn out in your favor, especially not before December 12. Thereafter your luck will steadily improve, and by the final week of the month your social mojo will be in full swing. Then — and only then — should you confidently strike up conversations with blue-chip collectors and museum curators over eggnog.

Aries (March 21–April 20)

Did the one-two punch of Thanksgiving immediately followed by Miami Art Week take the wind out of your sails, Aries? Are you knackered and ready to coast into 2016? Are you sensing that we’re asking you these leading questions in order to tell you that your instincts are wrong? Well, you’re right about that last part! You stand to benefit enormously, both professionally and romantically, if you work your turkey-padded butt off all month long. Your love life has the potential to be the best it’s ever been — ever! — in December and you simultaneously have a powerful astrological alignment in your favor on the work front. But it’s going to take more effort than going back for seconds of stuffing; you’ll need to hustle like every week is Miami Art Week.

Taurus (April 21–May 21)

Work is humming right along, Taurus: you’re wrapping up a series or project you’ve been developing for months and ready to move onto the next major endeavor. The stars say go for it, just don’t rush into anything. Don’t embark on a project that you won’t find fulfilling or that might leave you worse off. For example: an ambitious public campaign dealing with climate change or a series intended to draw attention to the refugee crisis could be a good idea; assuming the identity of a person of a different race to call attention to systemic racism and the hypocrisy of white supremacy might backfire terribly.

Gemini (May 22–June 21)

We could spend hours watching Jacolby Satterwhite‘s delirious videos of Boschian digital landscapes populated by hundreds of his own gyrating avatars. Granted, part of the fascination comes from the weirdo sci-fi hellscapes he creates, which seem informed by amusement park design, space station architecture, cellular structures, and paisley prints all at once. But what really keeps us hooked is the figure of Satterwhite himself literally dancing his pants off on every available surface of each successive digitally rendered environment. Be like Satterwhite, Gemini, because if you act decisively with total confidence and no shame, you will succeed in all your pursuits this month — romantic and otherwise.

Cancer (June 22–July 22)

We have often ridiculed Julian Schnabel — as recently as last month’s Aquarius horoscope, as a matter of fact — but something the bearded and bath-robed artist told revelers at a fancy party this week in Miami bears repeating here: “Girls and boys, shut the fuck up please!” You can avoid a lot of headaches and long-term repercussions if you just keep quiet until the new moon on December 11. If you can do this, Cancer, we promise never to use Schnabel’s words as astrological advice ever again.

Leo (July 23–August 22)

Action causes more trouble than thought, Leo, and at times inactivity is preferable to mindless functioning. What do we mean? Nothing! Those innocuous phrases are pulled from Jenny Holzer’s “Truisms” (1978–87), and we’re putting them into use because even though we appreciate that you’re a very witty cat, you’d better bite your tongue and stick to spouting platitudes this month or your career will suffer. While tact is of the utmost importance in your work right now, you can let your wild side roam at night, because even your most improbable romantic pursuits will pan out. Don’t believe us? Try using the “Truisms” as pick-up lines — you won’t believe your luck.

Virgo (August 23–September 23)

Did you ever see the Mr. Bean movie, Bean? For our money it is far and away the best art film of the 1990s — sorry, Thomas Crown Affair remake fans! For the unfamiliar, the reason Bean falls squarely into the “art film” category is because its plot revolves around a painting, James McNeill Whistler’s “Arrangement in Grey and Black No.1” (1871), aka “Whistler’s Mother.” To make a long story short — and relevant to your astrological forecast for December — in the film Mr. Bean gets in trouble not only for what he does to “Whistler’s Mother,” but even more so for attempting to conceal his gaffe. You may disappoint your loved ones this month, Virgo, but lying about it or trying to shift the blame will only make things worse.

Libra (September 24–October 23)

You could learn a thing or two from science museums, Libra, and we’re not just talking about their exhibitions and displays — though those are probably also quite educational. Several major science institutions (the Field Museum, the California Academy of Sciences, the London Science Museum) have recently taken steps to end their investments in and sponsorship agreements with the fossil fuel industry, and it’s high time you started looking into how your patrons make their money. Are any of them weapons manufacturers, factory farming magnates, or royalty from a terrifyingly repressive totalitarian country? Or, on a more local level, are any of them real estate megadevelopers taking advantage of lax zoning regulations and tenant laws to displace people? Now is an astrologically judicious time to balance your karmic checkbook. Think of this month as preparation for New Year’s resolutions.

Scorpio (October 24–November 22)

You know what would make an interesting two-artist show? A whole bunch of Yinka Shonibare MBE‘s theatrically posed mannequins draped in colorful Dutch colonial wax-print fabrics surrounded by Kara Walker silhouette murals. Not only are both artists referencing very specific historic iconographies and the overall histories of racism, colonialism, and slavery, but there’s a great deal of tension and implied violence in Shonibare’s art that gets acted out in Walker’s often-gruesome silhouette work. We’re telling you all this, Scorpio, not because this is an ideal time to do some high-profile curating — though it could be! — but rather because even though you may be tempted to go Walker and resort to violence this month to get what you want, you stand a better chance of achieving your goals if you keep cool and dapper, à la Shonibare.

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