Shades of Grey: artist Aubrey Beardsley


Aubrey Beardsley was an Art Noveau artist who died at the beginning of the 20th century from tuberculosis on the French Riviera. He had gone there to help improve his weak lungs, but it was too little too late, and he died at the age of twenty-five.

If Samuel Morse Whistler, a famous American artist living in London, wore all white, Mr. Beardsley, far younger than the famous Whistler, wore all dove gray. The picture above is painted in his typical attire, which was considered only appropriate by the British upper classes as “morning attire.” One changed for tea and if dining out again for evening dinner. Beardsley, forever the artist, refused to come out of his morning wear, perhaps knowing that he would die in his youth.

A Beardsley zodiac ring wheel 3 atm

The three legs of the tripod in Beardsley gray


Chart Highlights

You can download his chart here.A Beardsley zodiac ring wheel 3 atm

We have rectified his chart to an Ascendant of 12 Scorpio, that has the symbol of A Gold Rush.” Marc Edmund Jones writes that this symbol is the “exploration of one’s natural resources through personal initiative” and offers high rewards for the person genuinely willing to challenge his own human skills for their own good fortune.

Mr. Beardsley was an astounding illustrationist tapping in Toulouse Lautrec’s florid cartooning of Moulin Rouge but all in black and white. He said to have come to this idea by seeing Japanese Ukiyoe (i.e. Floating World) Art that was coming to London from Paris. Ukiyoe is a pen and ink drawing, that is colored by various washes applied over the picture (see the gallery above).

Temperament Type:

As shown on the map above, Mr. Beardsley is a splay or as Robert Jansky termed it a Tripod temperament type.  This is because he has no oppositions in his chart, though several conjunctions.  He is not a bucket as typically the handle is opposed to something in the bowl.

Saturn is the High Focus for Beardsley according to Dr. Marc Edmund Jones writings as it alone the Northeastern hemisphere in the third house of communications.  It does not have aspect to Jupiter in the tenth house, so Beardsley does not have the Line of Personality.  Nor does he have the line of Vitality, Moon to Sun,  nor the Line of Efficiency Venus to Mars (they are semisextile and probably could work in a pinch).

He does though have the Line of Culture, Pluto at 20.49 Taurus to Uranus in the ninth at 03.13 Leo, showing that he was putting all his effort into his art for his posterity. His respiratory afflictions put a lot of pressure on him to do something that was worthwhile and lasting.

Uranus here is found at 04 Leo, or A man formally dressed, that definitely reminds us of his unique and stylized garments. Neptune is 27 Aries symbolizing the “lost opportunity” regained through his personal imagination. Jones writes that this is emblematic of a native who wishes re-establish himself in his own world and his own efforts rather than palm off another’s.

                                                   Chiron was discovered in 1970’s

This is supported by Chiron at 14.34 Aries, not found anytime in his lifetime, but an interesting footnote.  It depicts where Beardsley felt the most remorse:  in his house of work and health.  He felt that because of his health that he could not create his work as much as would like.  Chiron here has the image of a “dark curtain casting a pall” according to  Charubel suggesting an “early death.” Beardsley died at 26 in the Southern France.


The Midheaven

In Beardsley’s Midheaven shares the spotlight with his  Sun at Leo 28.3 showing how much fame in his artistic career meant to him. He was definitely ambitious and in his lifetime found critical acclaim and publication. The symbol for his Sun is the Mermaid who “seeks and responds to the creative” side of life; Charubel says this symbol is a “large white piece of paper” of where the native is scribbling.


                                The Beardsley Oeuvre

You can lots of his work here, which is often reprinted by Dover Publications, and here.