Why Sagittariuses Should Date Outside the Art World and More Creative Counsel for This Dynamic Sign, Straight from an Astrologer

Toyko-based artist and astrologer Emilia Wang divines the weeks ahead.

Sagittarius from a Book of Hours, Italy, perhaps Milan. Third quarter of the Fifteenth Century. Courtesy of the Morgan Library & Museum.
Sagittarius from a Book of Hours, Italy, perhaps Milan. Third quarter of the 15th century. Courtesy of the Morgan Library & Museum.

Welcome to Sagittarius season! The ninth house of the zodiac, Sagittarius (November 22–December 21) is a fire sign represented by a celestial archer. Sagittarius’s archer is sometimes depicted as a man, other times as a centaur, hinting at the sign’s restlessness and adaptability (Pisces, Gemini, and Virgo are the zodiac’s other mutable signs). This one-of-a-kind sign is bold and passionate, mixing curiosity with courage.

As symbolized by the archer’s bow and arrow, those born in this house are the zodiac’s explorers, destined for far-off destinations, both geographically and creatively. They thrive in freedom, and with a thirst for knowledge, they often make excellent storytellers. A certain off-the-cuff honesty can cause misunderstandings, and sometimes even pain, for those in their orbit. Nevertheless, the dynamism and sheer force of the Sagittarian vision makes them hard to resist (no shock that Diego Rivera was a Sagittarius, for instance).

Emilia Wang. Photogrpahy by Lisetanne Sterling-Scherschel.

Emilia Wang. Photo: Lisetanne Sterling-Scherschel.

But with so many passions and shifting interests, what is the best role for a Sagittarius in the art world? Do their storytelling abilities make them natural-born teachers, or perhaps preternaturally gifted curators? 

We connected with Emilia Wang, a Tokyo-based astrologer, artist, and singer-songwriter, who took the time to answer all our burning questions.

Who would you say is a defining Sagittarius artist, and why?

In my mind, the quintessential Sagittarius artist is Howard Finster, an outsider artist and Baptist minister from Georgia. His life’s work was the folk art sculpture gardenParadise Gardenwhich includes over 46,000 works. Finster epitomizes the Sagittarian impulse to traverse and build new worlds, as well as to tie the spiritual to the material. His works play with scale to a point at which they envelop and re-situate the viewer in space and time. Sagittariuses often desire to invoke larger meaning or sacred catharsis with their work.

Another important Sagittarius artist is Kara Walker. Her work is bold, dark, and undisguised— and, as Hilton Als writes, “abstract without turning away from the world in order to represent internal abstraction.” Sagittarius placements have interesting relations both to truth and abstraction, often flirting with moving closer and closer to uncomfortable possibilities and then searching for common horizon lines.

Lastly, Marina Abramović. Her work also epitomizes a Sagittarian impulse to create something confrontational, but within that confrontation, there is still a glimpse of the yearning for a spiritual catharsis. 

What are Sagittariuses’ strongest qualities as artists?

Sagittarius artists have a desire to create art that is transcendent. It’s easy for Sagittarius artists to connect to the ideas and feelings that make their hearts soar and bring that into a material realm in a way that can be totally immersive. As artists, they are capable of working across many different mediums, and often at a scale and magnitude that makes their artistic voices very singular. I also love that Sagittariuses are not afraid to mix the vulgar with the sanctified, or use humor to say something profound. 

What are Sagittarius artists’ most common pitfalls?

They should watch out for becoming too didactic, or relying too much on scale or theatrics as stand-ins for a deeper interrogation of their own process and material. 

Sagittarius as depicted in the Book of Wonders, a 14th-15th-century Arabic astrology text.

Sagittarius as depicted in the Book of Wonders, a 14th–15th-century Arabic astrology text.

What type of medium or role would a Sagittarius be best suited to in the art world? 

Sagittariuses make great interdisciplinary and performance artists. They could be great publishers of zines or art books. They also have the potential to become great professors and mentors. 

If a Sagittarius is feeling stuck, what is the best way for them to get out of a creative rut?

If you have the means and ability, being able to move around and travel would restart some sparks. If this isn’t possible, spending time away from making and just giving yourself time to read, watch movies, or any type of non-pressured intellectual exploration will help. 

If an art career isn’t taking off right now, what would be the best day job for a Sagittarius?

Sagittariuses have many passions and could really enjoy teaching, publishing, or doing religious divinatory or spiritual work. A day job where Sagittarius doesn’t have to compromise their ideals and dreams is very important, and also a place where they can really get along with their coworkers and the workspace in general. An overlooked aspect of Sagittarius and its ruler, Jupiter, is that sociality is actually very important: Much of their spark comes from trading and sharing ideas and beliefs with others. 

Romantic advice: If a Sagittarius were going to date someone in the art world, who would they be compatible with? A dealer, curator, painter, etc.? 

Most importantly, a Sagittarius would do well dating someone who is not too clingy or controlling, and is very straightforward. An artist with whom they can ping ideas off of and debate could be very compatible. 

But I actually think for Sagittariuses, it’s maybe better to date outside the field. Or date someone with some strong interests outside of art, because how else are you going to feel that new, adventurous romantic feeling if you just stick to what you know?

What kind of art gift should I buy for the Sagittarius in my life?

Hmm…if travel were more safe or accessible, I would say a plane ticket somewhere for learning or fun, or discovering new art and forms. Otherwise, I think a book of poetry is a really beautiful gift that you can get lost in and discover new worlds through. 

What should Sagittarius artists expect this season?

Your birthday season may be a bit raw, or at least exhausting (as last year’s was as well). The south node is finishing its transit through your sign, and with a final eclipse in your sign on December 4, you may feel drained but ultimately cleansed from all the releasing you’ve been doing since mid-2020. Make sure to not over-book yourself. And congratulate yourself for all that you’ve shed and the new layers you’ve found inside yourself.

What should everyone expect this season?

The end of the year is pretty intense. While a lot of the action is centered around the last two weeks of December, we can begin to feel what’s about to happen beforehand. The main dates I’m watching out for are the December 4 solar eclipse in Sagittarius and Venus turning retrograde on December 19. 

In the lead-up to that one, we may be confronted with our intense or repressed desires, or else be witnessing how we deal with power at large. This can take place on an interpersonal level or a societal level. Be gentle with your shame and allow yourself a safe space to unravel from time to time. 

Any tips for staying creatively motived and energized through the winter months?

I think that winter is a great time to not do anything. It’s nature’s built-in rest period. Find what makes you feel cozy, invest in good socks, catch the sun when it deigns to appear. Allow yourself creativity that has no deadlines or “purpose.” 

 

Wondering which artists are Sagittariuses? Here are 10 of art history’s best.

Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec: November 24, 1864

Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec. Photograph by Hulton-Deutsch Collection/CORBIS/Corbis via Getty Images.

Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec. Photo: Hulton-Deutsch Collection/CORBIS/Corbis via Getty Images.

 

Kara Walker: November 26, 1969 

Kara Walk at the "Party In The Garden," Museum Of Modern Art, New York, 2015. JUNE 02: Kara Walker attends the 2015 Museum of Modern Art Party In The Garden and special salute to David Rockefeller on his 100th Birthday at Museum of Modern Art on June 2, 2015. Courtesy of Paul Zimmerman/WireImage.

Kara Walker at the Museum of Modern Art’s Party In The Garden, New York, 2015. Courtesy of Paul Zimmerman/WireImage.

 

William Blake: November 28, 1757 

Thomas Phillips, Portrait of William Blake (1807).

Thomas Phillips, Portrait of William Blake (1807).

Marina Abramović: November 30, 1946  

Marina Abramovic at the Villa Reale, Milan, Italy, 2012. Photograph by Vittorio Zunino Celotto/Getty Images.

Marina Abramović at the Villa Reale, Milan, Italy, 2012. Photo: Vittorio Zunino Celotto/Getty Images.

Georges Seurat: December 2, 1859 

Georges Seurat, 1888

Georges Seurat (1888). Courtesy of Wikipedia Commons.

 

Howard Finster: December 2, 1916

Portrait of American artist and minister Howard Finster as he poses in his studio, with one of his paintings behind him, 1990s. Photograph by Anthony Barboza/Getty Images.

American artist and minister Howard Finster in his studio, with one of his paintings behind him, circa 1990s. Photo: Anthony Barboza/Getty Images.

Camille Claudel: December 8, 1864 

Camille Claudel (sometime before 1883). Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

Camille Claudel (sometime before 1883). Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

 

Cai Guo-Qiang: December 8, 1957 

Contemporary artist Cai Guo-Qiang poses after creating a new work from fire and gunpowder; 31-meter gunpowder on silk drawing, titled Transience II (Peony) (2019).Photograph by Scott Barbour/Getty Images for NGV.

Cai Guo-Qiang poses after creating a new 100-foot-long gunpowder-on-silk drawing titled Transience II (Peony) (2019). Photo: Scott Barbour/Getty Images for NGV.

 

Diego Rivera: December 8, 1886 

Diego Rivera, while painting the Great Hall of the 70-story RCA Building in Rockefeller Center, New York. Courtesy of Getty Images.

Diego Rivera while painting the great hall of the RCA Building at Rockefeller Center, New York. Courtesy of Getty Images.

 

Helen Frankenthaler: December 12, 1928 

Portrait of Abstract Expressionist artist Helen Frankenthaler as she poses in her studio, New York, New York, 1978. Photograph by Brownie Harris/Corbis via Getty Images.

Helen Frankenthaler in her New York studio, 1978. Photo: Brownie Harris/Corbis via Getty Images.


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