• Ideas
  • Mar 15, 2022

Artstrology: Pisces 2022, Be Water

Illustration by AMY FAN for ArtAsiaPacific.

2021 and early 2022 was a period for Pisces to shine—if not to also draw out personal scandals, as Jupiter’s stay in this sign magnified both their talents and their shadows. The Pisces who were hardworking gained rewards; moving on, 2022 will be the year for Pisces to acquire more resources through the attention that they’ve earned from the previous year.

People often have misunderstandings about Pisces being “romantic” and “dreamy,” and are surprised to realize that Pisces are not as they’d expected. But this is because most of us are limited to clichés of “romance” and “dreams.” Pisces understands profoundly the variations in these ideas and adopts the mutability of dreams to their work and life. See, for example, in Pisces artist Cao Fei’s video project Whose Utopia (2006), in which each worker at the Osram lighting factory in Foshan, China, has their own dream: imagining themselves as a ballerina, a guitarist, or a tai-chi master. Not only does Cao’s work broaden the definition of what we imagine as a “utopia” but it also highlights how within a mechanical, closed system of a factory, their dreams differ, allowing them to escape from one monopolized “dream.” In the more recent project Asia One (2018), which again highlights the human nature of factory workers, Cao expands our understandings of romance, signifying the possibility for a romantic relationship between humans and nonhumans like the factory’s robot workers.

For Pisces, this kind of fluidity—or rather, surrender when it comes to defining a concept or an object—is not only limited to dreams, but also extends to all things in life. After all, going with the flow is Pisces’s ultimate wisdom of living. The late artist and writer Etel Adnan demonstrated this in an interview, fully embracing her hybrid background and identities, when the interviewer asked her about her duality of living in two places and bearing two careers: “I am a Pisces, I feel this duality in me, which is constantly in synthesis. Am I Arab or Greek like my mother? A Muslim or a Christian? I did not make out of the fact that I was born in a Muslim and Christian family a problem, and it was never a cause of personal pain.” Her book-length poem The Arab Apocalypse (1980), which describes her experience of the Lebanese Civil War through texts and glyphs, brings together both her practices of visual arts and poetry, and transforms the genre of witness literature. In this poem, the sun bears different roles in the war: witness, perpetrator, victim, but is also described at times as “LUCIFER,” “a shark pursuing stars in the sky’s seas,” “a traitor,” “a verb,” and “Nothingness.” The loose and unstable status of the sun conveys the complexity of the war and the impossibility of language and perception in such heightened states.

The Pisces season feels chaotic only when we refuse to surrender our control over life. Only when we do relent then we become, like Cao and Adnan, grounded in our own power and embrace our reality as it truly is—whether painful, blissful, or simply dull—and finally, do something about it.


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