If you’re subscriber to my free monthly newsletter, then you know that Venus – planet of beauty, art, and value – just turned (stationed) retrograde as of yesterday afternoon. I wrote an in-depth article about this 6-week long event in my October 1st newsletter that described multiple ways this energy can manifest in our personal lives, and along this vein I just saw something in the news that made my jaw drop because it so, so, SO perfectly encapsulates a facet of this energy! I simply could not let the opportunity to use this event as a teaching tool pass without writing a post about it, so here goes:
Venus has an incredibly strong effect on the Art world as a whole – she’s an intrinsically aesthetic energy concerned with beauty and value. The creation of beautiful things is her domain, whether this is visual or musical. She is the Pleasure Planet; she gives us things we like and appreciate, and because of this the things that fall under her dominion tend to be worth good coin. Now when a planet stations (turns from Direct motion to Retrograde motion or vice versa), that energy is incredibly strong for good or ill. So yesterday when the Venus vibe was at critical mass due this planet’s change of direction, an unforgettable event happened that shook the Art world in a huge way.
A work by the mysterious British street artist Banksy was auctioned off at Sotheby’s, and as the hammer fell the image shockingly self-destructed in front of a crowd of astonished onlookers. Apparently the artist had ingeniously designed a shredder to be hidden inside the frame that would slice the image into ribbons for just such an occasion. Banksy is known for works that up-end established paradigms and that often visually provide dark socio-political commentary, so presumably the artist may have become annoyed with the sky-high valuation (hello, Venus!) of his works in recent years by the Fine Art community and he decided to do something about it. We have to remember that he first rose to fame as a graffiti artist; a medium meant to be viewed by the masses rather than just a select few who can afford to privately own a million+ dollar painting. It would be very like him to make *a statement* about the absurdity of this by destroying his own work the moment a collector shelled out a cool $1.4 million to acquire it. As an astrologer, I would love/hate to see the transits of the buyer of this piece; specifically what that stationary Rx Venus was touching in his or her nativity.
It’s important to discuss how this Venus Retrograde kicked off in Scorpio; a sign aligned with the energy of destruction. We shouldn’t view this as inherently bad, though – destruction often paves the way for enrichment and renewal; like volcanic ash from an eruption that devastates a landscape but fertilizes the soil so the new or surviving plant life plant life can thrive. And in the case of this particular artwork, I have a strong feeling given the press surrounding it this piece has probably – ironically and no doubt much to Banksy’s chagrin – probably quadrupled in value because of this stunt despite being cut into pappardelle noodles. So the buyer who likely thought they lost their shirt on this investment for a hot second may yet have reason to smile. 🙃 Happy Venus Retrograde, everyone.