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Astrological Aesthetics: September 2016 Horoscopes

Giotto, "Presentation of the Virgin in the Temple" (1308–11) (via Wikimedia Commons)
Giotto, “Presentation of the Virgin in the Temple” (1308–11) (via Wikimedia Commons)

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

Virgo (August 23–September 23)

Have you ever bet money on the Turner Prize, Virgo? If not, we strongly suggest you start. There’s good money to be made in the relatively low-profile world of art competition gambling. We’ll even give you the inside track on this year’s heat (you can trust us — we won a whole year’s worth of beer money when we called it in favor of Assemble in 2015). Anthea Hamilton is already too high-profile; Josephine Pryde’s conceptual photography is a touch too clinical; and Michael Dean is out of luck because the Turner Prize has a strong anti-sculpture bias. Chance is on your side this month; time to cash in!

Libra (September 24–October 23)

Your close friendships are in need of some maintenance work, Libra, and a shared hobby or workshop is just the sort of bonding experience you and your besties need. No, we’re not recommending a night of drunken landscape painting at Pinot’s Palette — which is to artistic development as karaoke is to voice training. We’re talking about picking up some serious skills with a good friend or two, whether it’s trying out glass blowing, learning how to restore historic oil paintings, or getting real good at crochet. Nothing rebuilds bonds better than mutual embarrassment — as karaoke teaches us time and time again.

Scorpio (October 24–November 22)

Our favorite scene in the Robin Williams Oscarbait-y, based-on-a-true-story medical dramedy Patch Adams is when Patch, still a med student, welcomes a group of visiting gynecologists with a giant papier mâché sculpture of a woman’s spread legs, between which they have to pass to enter an auditorium hosting a conference. It’s a great visual gag, and also a nice (perhaps unintentional) reference to one of Niki de Saint Phalle’s breakout works, the monumental installation “Hon” (1966). This month one of your closest friends will open up and confess his or her love to you, Scorpio, so be prepared to dive in.

Sagittarius (November 23–December 21)

Phosphoroscope. Gasiform. Bloviate. There are conflicting stories about the origins of the name “Dada,” but the most common (and poetically charming) has it that the term was decided upon when, during a gathering of artists in the movement’s early days, a French-German dictionary was stabbed and the blade happened to land on the French word “dada,” meaning “hobbyhorse.” Your attention to detail is one of your defining traits and greatest qualities, Sagittarius, but sometimes you need to loosen up and stab a dictionary. Tamarisk. Clunk. Jussive.

Capricorn (December 22–January 20)

Twenty years from now — or whenever the current cycle of reboots, remakes, sequels, and prequels comes back around — when someone has the “brilliant” idea to relaunch the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise, we’d love to see Leonardo, Raphael, Michelangelo, and Donatello face off against a quarto of evil turtles named after contemporary artists: katana-toting Koons, ninja star-throwing Indiana, sledgehammer-wielding Wiley, and drone-piloting Ono. Occasionally, Capricorn, the best new ideas are just gussied-up old ideas.

Aquarius (January 21–February 19)

You’ve got a lot of boring business to tend to this month, Aquarius, but don’t let it get you down. Instead, think about how you might incorporate it into your work. Many great artists have turned bureaucratic tedium into their main medium, from Richard Prince’s legal explorations of photography and the boundaries of intellectual property, to Debtfair’s attempted inversion of the economics of student debt. How could your current workload of forms, documents, meetings, and appointments be made into a compelling art project?

Pisces (February 20–March 20)

A few years ago we foolishly agreed to attend a Michael Riedel lecture about his forthcoming body of work. The room was hot, cramped, and packed with apparent Riedel fanatics — as if such brutally dull work could inspire anything resembling fanaticism. We managed to only fall asleep a couple of times, and afterwards assured the gallery staff that Riedel was “so brilliant” and that we’d found the project “fascinating.” This month, Pisces, your loved ones will go on and on about things that you could care less about, but it’s imperative that you make a convincing show of caring deeply.

Aries (March 21–April 20)

One of the things that attracted us to horoscope writing in the first place was the zodiac’s fluid and nonhierarchical stance on most every marker of difference, from gender to ethnicity to sexuality. Astrology, thankfully, is more Kalup Linzy than Marina Abramović. This month is the exception that proves the rule, as the astrological forecast varies radically for male and female Aries. The former can look forward to a month of romantic escapades and fulfilling modernization projects at work. Aries ladies, however, will have to juggle the frustrations of unfulfilling romance without reverting to a hermetic lifestyle for the next 30 days. Gender equality is still very much a work in progress, even in the stars.

Taurus (April 21–May 21)

A tall, rectangular, windowless gallery is filled with fans humming loudly and pointed directly upward. The arrangement creates a walkway of sorts that leads you through the space. Above each fan dangles a whimsical sculpture made from found materials — miscellaneous clothing, crinkly plastic bags, rubber tchotchkes, unidentifiable plush toys, and more — dancing wildly in the breeze. This delightful installation, “Motion Emotion” (2011–12) by Annette Messager, feels like a crowded nightclub where someone turned on the lights and everyone just kept dancing. Your month will be a lot like “Motion Emotion,” Taurus, so stay cool and keep dancing.

Gemini (May 22–June 21)

As you shuttle around between all the gallery openings and new blockbuster museum shows this month, Gemini, keep your eyes peeled and lips sealed. Someone is out to get you — could be a longtime foe or a new rival, the astral indicators are ambiguous on this point — and they may use any untoward thing you say against you. Be deviously warm and disarmingly friendly; stand by calmly while they attempt to take you down, like an Urs Fischer wax candle figure. Tire them out so that, when the time is right, you can swiftly and decisively put them in their place.

Cancer (June 22–July 22)

We could take or leave Holton Rower‘s sculptural paintings, glitchy and chromatic texture porn ideally suited to interior decoration. But the videos of his works being made are catnip for our eyes, with pools, puddles, and cascades of popping paint oozing over boxes and canvases, piling up like layers of icing on some reality TV baking contest. The pleasure to be found in his work is all in the movement and flow, rather than the static end result. Boring as it sounds in light of this admittedly counter-intuitive example, Cancer, this month you need to embrace stability and stasis. Resist the urge to follow the flow, and stand your ground.

Leo (July 23–August 22)

We love us some good cave art, Leo, and we don’t mean prehistoric. From Nathalie Djurberg’s grotesque grotto “Turn into Me” (2009) to Mike Kelley’s Superman complex “Kandor 10B (Exploded Fortress of Solitude)” (2011), there’s something eminently satisfying about works that function as both expansive sculpture-cum-installations and as bespoke theaters for transporting video projects. We’ve been known to spend many hours in such works, Leo, but you must resist the temptation to hole up in a cave this month. Things may look bleak at the beginning of September, but they’ll get better if — and only if — you go out there and have some fun.

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