Category: On Culture

Art, music, books, poetry, fashion, dance, television… the products of our imaginations and the people who make them.

Astrology of Now: One Wedding, A Funeral and Two Fairytale Endings
St George and the Dragon by Jean-Francois Sulpice. The soldier prince Mars married the queen of the May, Venus, last Friday. A monster was slain on Monday. How can these things possibly connect symbolically? The charts, after all, are very similar with a heavy emphasis on Aries opposing solo [...]
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RIP Poly Styrene
“Some people say little girls should be seen and not heard, but I say, Oh bondage, up yours!” Thank you Poly Styrene, for giving me something to shout as I drive up to the school gates to pick up my little girls. The pioneer of feminist punk died today at the age of 53. If […]
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Primavera: Love is All Around
Yesterday, we walked through purple violets, pale yellow primroses and cowslips, pink campion and bluebells. White petals from the mayflower tree spattered the ground beneath our feet and scented the air around us. Truly, the goddess of beauty, Venus, rules. Who doesn’t love this time of [...]
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Pallas Athena and the God of War
Imagine you are trotting down the Appian Way in Rome sometime around 202 BC. It’s a hot spring day and you’re working up quite a sweat. Your toga is flapping behind you and your slave, a rather dashing Gaul (with rippling muscles and bedroom eyes – hang on a minute…back to [...]
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Brotherhood of Romantics: Neptune in Pisces Redux
Daydreaming by DG Rossetti London 1848: capital of the largest empire the world has ever seen, a city where the rich live in lace and cream and fripperies, children work as chimney sweeps and bootblacks, where the streets run with sewage, and where everyone is – more or less – for sale. Just [...]
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Art and Astrology: Aries Self Portraits
Why is it than when astrologers talk about the most creative signs, Aries is seldom the first word that leaves their lips? The sign of the Ram is the beginning, the source, the start, the seed – and as such packs a huge amount of creative power. Especially when the Sun, the source of life, [...]
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Lovely Elizabeth Taylor
Liz Taylor had glamour. Right up to the end she sparkled with magical, movie star enchantment. Neptune sprinkled her with stardust, but cursed her as well – with boozers, with losers, with no boundaries. She was such a Pisces. Look at those famous violet eyes. I’ll let you draw your own [...]
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Pisces Self Portraits
Piet Mondrian, March 7 1872. It’s Pisces, so the eyes have it. Those born under the sign of the fishes are supposed to be blessed with a beautiful liquid gaze. I have to say that the two people I’ve known with truly extraordinarily beautiful eyes – one woman with eyes as [...]
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The Magical Tide Jewels of Japan
One of Hiroshige’s Views of Mount Fuji As a wedding gift, the dragon-king of the sea gave his human son-in-law two jewels – kanju and manju. He wanted to ensure the future prosperity of his semi-divine descendants. Those jewels were not just decorative though. They had wonderful [...]
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Fat Boy, Fukushima and Japan Facing Frankenstein
Godzilla emerged from the depths of the ocean back in 1954, and trashed Tokyo. He may have been a plastic monster in a less than B-movie, but he also symbolised something important. Let me explain. A rather attractive Polish version of Godzilla. Godzilla – as you may recall (I had to [...]
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Charlie and Lola’s Homage to Pisces
Yes, Pisces rules the feet. Lauren Child, the genius who created Charlie and Lola, keeps her birthday a secret. But I think Lola’s a little Gemini and Charlie might be a Pisces. What do you think?There’s an exhibition of her work on in Stratford, London until May 2.
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Awakening Frankenstein
Boris Karloff in the 1931 film Frankenstein. In the summer I wrote a post about Dracula with some suggestions about which planets we could associate with the fanged one. I ended that piece by suggesting that Frankenstein might be associated with the planet Uranus. |’ve  come back to [...]
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Talk on Monsters
I’m giving a talk on Scary Monsters. February 16 at the Oxford Astrology Group. For more information look at their site. Come along if you’re in the neighborhood.
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Valentine’s Day, Aquarius and the Goddess of Marriage
I’ve always thought it more than a little ironic that the day of the year designated for lovers is February 14. After all the Sun is in Aquarius – and Aquarius, as we all know is cool, calm, friendly, intelligent, rational. But passionate? Romantic? Heart-broken? Love-struck? Frenzied? [...]
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Art and Astrology: Aquarian Self-portraits
Aquarius is the sign of the avant-garde – and who could be more emblematic of the avant garde than Edouard Manet. Some of his paintings are still kind of shocking when you think about it. Dejeuner sur L’Herbe scandalised Paris when it was exhibited in 1863. You can see why. What’s [...]
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Harry Potter and Ophiucus
Here is a tale of two books written about 2000 years apart.All the hooha about the intruder constellation Ophiucus sent me to my well-thumbed copy of Manilius’ Astronomica, the Roman astrology manual dating from around the second century. I knew there’d be a tit-bit in there.It [...]
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Astrology and Art: Capricorn Self-Portraits
There are two main ways I like to use astrology when I’m thinking about art. 1. Knowing an artist’s birth chart or simply natal Sun can give you real insight into how planets might work out in real life. Works of art are a non-verbal expression of character that often speaks more [...]
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The Yin of Capricorn
Winter Moonlight by George Inness captures the stillness of this time of year. The end of December. In the northern hemisphere, the darkest, quietest and stillest part of the year. The time when the earth’s energy is at its weakest and we have a little more time to think – reflecting on the [...]
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Why Capricorn Nigella is a Modern Vestal (Un)Virgin
A priestess of the goddess Vesta, “tutelary deity” to Capricorn.Here imagined by 19th century painter  Lord Leighton. Capricorns is a dull sign, ruled by that old curmudgeon Saturn – right? It’s all about status and work and dads and being sensible bla bla bla. [...]
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Captain Beefheart: Creativity Nurtured by Saturn
  Captain Beefheart (far right) and the long-suffering Magic Band, back in 1969. A creative visionary died this week. Don Van Vliet (aka Captain Beefheart) (born January 15, 1941 at 4.25pm) was a legendary avant-garde musician and performer and a damn fine painter. In both his chosen [...]
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