Scorpiology should be a subject. In 1973, the sculptor Richard Serra made a short video called Television Delivers People. How prescient was this?! He talked of it as a corporate control tactic to maintain the status quo.
He’s 81 now, approaching his Uranus Return. I’d like to know his thoughts on today’s data harvesting and The Algorithm.
Serra is also scorped up to the max: Sun in Scorpio square Pluto (the ruler of Scorpio) in Leo, Mercury conjunct the North Node in Scorpio. If you’re getting an ozonic whiff of Aquarius here, yes! He has the Moon and Jupiter in Aquarius but they’d also accentuate the Scorpio/ Plutonic dynamic.
So how’s this for a magnificent example of Scorpiology?
Obsession is what it comes down to. It is difficult to think without obsession, and it is impossible to create something without a foundation that is rigorous, incontrovertible, and, in fact, to some degree repetitive. Repetition is the ritual of obsession. Repetition is a way to jumpstart the indecision of beginning. To persevere and to begin over and over again is to continue the obsession with work. Work comes out of work. In order to work, you must already be working.
He’s busier than ever before, with three major exhibitions in 2020 and a temperament tactfully described by a sculpture curator as “stormy.” And an art critic unintentionally evokes a Plutonic tone with this description of Serra’s work: It’s as if Mr. Serra is trying to bridge two poles, to create an aura of danger and then banish it in short order.
Other Scorpiological credentials: He works on a huge scale in heavy metal; his works have collapsed museum floors. A Hispanic-American self-described “old-style lefty,” he put himself through university by working as a steelworker but says he was “politicized” in the late Eighties after the government destroyed one of his sculptures.
Scorpios and Pluto-People don’t so much adapt to change as eat it up and digest it, integrating the energy into their narrative. Serra’s psychoanalyst told him to “calm down” when he said he wanted to be the “best sculptor in the world.” Here is the advice he gives to aspirant artists:
“Your life’s a nanosecond; if you have a contribution to make, then make it. Don’t bitch about it.”
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