Lunar Calendar

September 9th - October 10th, 2018

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New Moon in Leo

9 September

Celebrate and dream big

New Moon in Leo is good for both leisure and work. The energy is fun, flirty, and perfect for a holiday. Working on this Sunday could be beneficial as well because the new moon provides a perfect energy to brainstorm and develop new ideas. Leo will bring in the creativity.

Try a New Moon Ritual

Fall season openings at many galleries and art spaces

New Moon in Virgo

10, 11, 12 September
Monda, Tuesday, Wednesday

Observe, analyze, and solve.

The moon in Virgo will stimulate critical observation. Use patience and empathy to analyze your own and others’ practices and projects. This can bring both fresh insight and help formulate practical solutions.

You can see Daddy Longlegs everywhere

Fire Trigon

11, 8 AM - 9 PM, GMT+2

Work on something you feel passionate about.

On Tuesday the three fire signs (Aries, Leo and Sagittarius) form a triangle or “trigon” of 120°, projecting a strong fire energy that overrules Virgo. This energy is characterized as fiery, impulsive and passionate. Present new ideas with conviction and use the fiery perseverance where needed.

Waxing Crescent Moon in Libra

13, 14 September
Thursday, Friday

Solve disagreements with charm and creativity.

Optimism and empathy with others is an important virtue these days and could come in handy for social activities. Any discord with collaborators? Use the diplomacy and charm of Libra to take a step back and reflect with an open and creative mind.

Fall season openings at many galleries and art spaces

Waxing Crescent Moon in Scorpio

15, 16* September
(*Sun moves from Leo to Virgo)
Saturday, Sunday

Intense emotions and determination.

Scorpio is emotional and feels very involved with its relationships. This weekend could be great to spend with long time friends or to deepen relationships. When there is work that really can’t wait until after the weekend, Scorpio can provide focus and concentration.

This might be a perfect weekend for gathering chestnuts

First Quarter Moon in Sagittarius

17, 18, 19 September
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday

Look forward, commit, and produce.

This moon phase and Sagittarius are all about getting things done. During this period of of addition and growth, anything added to our work and bodies will have more impact. With its fiery attitude, creativity and enthusiasm for the future this archer will help to find the right mindset.



20, 6 AM - 4 PM, GMT+2

unpreferable energy
Enjoy a break

After adding and building, now is a great time to take a break and if possible, don’t plan anything important. Avoid sending important emails, applications or planning meetings.

Waxing Gibbous Moon in Capricorn

20, 21 September
Thursday, Friday

Don’t give up! Tweak!

Capricorn is the most ambitious and organized sign, making these days great for wise and strategic planning. Use this moment to shuffle, think long-term, go over plans and adjust where needed. What is working and what isn’t?

Find some beeches in your area and gather beech nuts

Waxing Gibbous Moon in Aquarius

22, 23 September
Saturday, Sunday

Social but against the status quo.

Aquarius brings a creative and open-minded energy, it is social, progressive and anti-establishment. Enjoying the weekend with company or a good book can create an original and inventive spark. Any brainstorm will benefit from this energy.

Astronomical start of autumn

Full Moon in Pisces

24, 25, 26 September
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday

Deep and dreamy connections.

Take a step back and feel dreamy and romantic during this full moon in Pisces. Pisces relates to empathy, contemplation and artistic creation. Connections with other people but also materials, music and arts can move deeper and enhance creativity and flow.

Disseminating Moon in Aries

27, 28 September
Thursday, Friday

Perseverance for completion.

The waning period is the perfect time to get rid of anything unneeded. Aries offers support with any challenge and gives the energy to continue the projects that you are committed to carrying through to completion.

Squirrels and dormice start hoarding

Disseminating Moon in Taurus

29, 30 September, 1 October
Saturday, Sunday, Monday

Rest, accept and care.

The recent phase of the waxing and full moon took a lot of energy. Taurus in disseminating moon is the time to take a step back, get enough sleep, eat well, and enjoy something relaxing. Accept that where you are is where you should be.

Gather rose hips, blackthorn, and hawthorn with the backdrop of trees in their autumn colors

Disseminating Moon in Gemini

2, 3 October
Tuesday, Wednesday

Talk and analyze.

This is a great period to finish, re-organize, and structure tasks. Use the social and intellectual energy of Gemini to talk about your project with other people, feel more articulate, and feel receptive to feedback when explaining your ideas.

Disseminating Moon in Cancer

4 October

Express creativity and retreat.

Cancer has a great imagination and rich emotional life, it can be very social but also homey. This is a great time to do creative work and reflect with some unexpected fiction. Don’t expect to work late and instead make time to enjoy the home.



5, 6, until 4 PM, GMT+2
Friday, Saturday

End, stop, and disconnect.

The perigee is the point within the track around the Earth closest to the Earth’s centre of gravity. At this point the moon will reach its fastest movement causing an unfavorable energy; creating the perfect time for rest and not undertaking things of great importance.

Balsamic Moon in Leo

6, 7 October
Saturday, Sunday

A perfect time for a relaxing weekend.

The last days before the new moon are called balsamic. This is not about a tasty Italian vinegar but refers to balm, the application of anything healing or soothing. It is a great time to take it easy and surrender. Luckily Leo is all about self-care.

New Moon in Virgo

8, 9, 10 October
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday

a fresh new start
Welcome the arrival of the new moon.

This is a good moment to reflect on your life; it is an appropriate time to make changes and adjustments. Organized and tidy Virgo will offer support to catch up on paperwork, administration and clear surroundings to create a fresh start without distractions.

Try a New Moon Ritual

Moon Phases

New Moon

When the sun does not shine on the side of the moon visible from earth, we call the moon “new.” This is a phase of addition; from the invisible new moon we start to see a little more of the moon everyday by the light of the sun reflecting off of the moon’s surface. Anything added to one’s body has more of an impact. This can also apply to one’s work and plans, intensifying the effects of one’s intentions and efforts, whether positive of negative. The new moon phase is the time to dream and plan first steps. The full moon ritual for setting intentions that is included in the calendar can aid in this process.

Waxing Crescent

Follow the moon’s growth from invisibility to radiance and presence, visualizing those dreams and plans set during the new moon doing the same. This is a phase to have courage, work and move forward. Those prone to fear, must summon extra courage in the time of waxing crescent not to give up at the start.

First Quarter

During the first quarter, the moon is half illuminated. This is a time to commit to the right challenges with confidence and concentration. Go over the list of intentions to fully connect with them. Distinguish well between insecurity and lack of motivation. If it is an insecurity you find in your intentions, commit doubly to growing those dreams. If it is a lack of motivation ask whether it may be best to let go of these things. This can make more energy and confidence available for the most important things.

Waxing Gibbous

This time is phase of coming into full potential. Ask what is working and what isn’t. There may be a need to make some changes and adjustments in order to build momentum in the process of making the dreams more visible. In this period stamina and patience are requisite.


The full moon is a phase of completion and culmination. When sun and moon are directly opposite from each other, the sun fully illuminated the moon and the moon is visible in its full shape. These positions highlight opposing forces and polarities. Similarly, the full moon relates to the new moon within this cycle. Tasks and goals set then can now be fine-tuned or completed. This is a phase for manifesting intention; its harvest time. This time of plenty is an ideal moment to also forgive anyone and any-thing that may have hurt you. Use this newly created space to feel gratitude, filling it with the fruits of your labor.


The recent phases of the waxing and full moon demanded a great deal of energy. After the full moon the waning phase starts. Now it’s time to take a step back and relax. This decreasing phase is also a good period to get rid of anything unneeded, like negative thoughts or bad habits. Pick through the harvest and get rid of fruits which may rot. Accept “what is” and “where you are” in relation to realizing dreams and intentions. It is not the time to start something new.

Last Quarter

Exactly in between the full and new moon phases, the moon is half full again. The sun creates a hard edge on the moon. Some discomfort can arise in this phase. Conflict may also arise. Tiredness may become more intense in this stage. To guard against things which may spoil the harvest, confront these with perseverance and an awareness of bringing the process to completion.


The moon is shrinking, nearing the completion of its cycle. In the last days it is a mere sliver, barely visible. Dreams and intentions have been planned, executed, improved, and now finished. This is the end of a period, take it easy and let go. End, stop, reflect and disconnect from the things you no longer need in your life. The reflections will allow for new dreams to enter in the next cycle.


Grounded Practical Stable

Emotional Psychic Mysterious

Fiery Impulsive Passionate

Chatty Flightly Intellectual







The basic structure of the Lunar Calendar originates from biodynamic planting calendars which are based upon the phases of the moon, the moon’s relation to the twelve constellations, and the constellations’ astrological characteristics.

The twelve constellations do not just relate to individuals' with that zodiac sign. When the moon passes through a constellation, the associated zodiac and the moon's phase interact, producing a general impact on earth's living things. Regardless of a person's zodiac sign (sometimes called their sun sign), that person can experience the energy of other signs of the zodiac when the moon is situation in that sign's constellation.

In traditional agriculture it is common to pay careful attention to the moon phases and locations when undertaking planting, harvesting, weeding, and other activities. The accumulation of this knowledge is brought together in agricultural almanacs. In astrology the moon is considered one of many celestial energies influencing life on earth; these energies include the other planets in our solar system whose constant motion and their effects on earth are described in great detail.

In the Medieval period the world was divided into four classical elements: Fire, Earth, Air and Water. The elements were used to organize and group cosmological phenomenon across different scales into a schema, into a cohesive whole. In the Biodynamic planting calendars the constellations and the development of plant parts are associated with the four classical elements. Each element is associated with a different phase of development: Fire with fruits, Earth with roots, Air with flowers and Water with Leaves. On the human level the elements can be associated with different types of sensations: Fire with impulse or passion; Earth with groundedness, practicality, stability; Air with the intellect, but also with being talkative or even flighty; and Water with sensitivity, empathy and mysteriousness.

The Lunar Calendar brings together these two traditions, these two bodies of knowledge, in a practical guide intended as an almanac for artistic practice.

In the Lunar Calendar cultural production is set in relation to movements of nature, seasons, and cosmos. You are invited to experiment with the material in your own way, whether studying the days’ influences in advance to use as a planning tool, or afterwards in an open-ended reflective manner.

It can be a very comforting — or terrifying — idea that many of the emotions or problems we experience are not just ours but can be influ- enced, exaggerated, or sometimes maybe caused by external forces. Such forces could be the retrograde of a planet or the phase of the moon. However, in the end our neighbors, family, partners, the weather, our sleep, stress and the food we eat exert great influence on us, reducing our sensitivity for external cosmological influence.

Constellations ⇔ Body


Moonology, Yasmin Boland, 2016

Llewellyn’s Complete book of Astrology, Kris Brandt Riske, 2017

Arrivals/ Departures Nature Calendar, Marcus Coates, 2017

One Straw Revolution, Masanobu Fukuoka, 2009

Brave Old World, Tom Hodgkinson, 2011

The Freedom Manifesto, Tom Hodgkinson, 2007

Herbal Wisdom, Roni Jay, 1999

In Harmonie met de maan, Johanna Paungger & Thomas Poppe, 2015; Enkhuizer Almanak 2018, 423ste Jaargang, 2018

Present Shock, Douglas Rushkoff, 2013

Maria Thun’s Zaaikalender, Matthias Thun, 2018

De aarde zal weer vruchtbaar zijn, Ellen Winkel, 2012



During the New Moon the brain produces acetylcholine, neurotransmitter which is associated with new ideas, making friends, and being open minded. Acetylcholine expands the veins, causing blood pressure to drop.

SEROTONIN / Waxing Moon

The week of the waxing moon is all about getting things done, being industrious, and reaching conclusions. Serotonin has a positive influence on memory, moods, confidence, sleep, emotion, sexual activity, and appetite. This neurotransmitter also makes it easier to cope with stress.

DOPAMINE / Full Moon

During the full moon phase the brain creates more dopamine neurotransmitters than the rest of the month. Dopamine increases pleasure and happiness, causing one to feel active and social, in the mood for fun and relaxation and less in the mood for work. Although dopamine can reduce stress, in high doses it can make people hyperactive; some of us might have had the experience of feeling hyper, like we can do anything — except concentrate — during a full moon.


The waning moon phase causes the brain to produce more norepinephrine, a neurotransmitter that aides in the execution of analytical tasks, organizing, and structuring. In this phase it is good to execute and finish tasks.

Author's note

Rhythms of nature create seasonal sensitivity. The cosmos also has rhythms. How can we relate to nature and the cosmos in a way that produces flow and structure within life and creative practice? That is to ask, how can we live in harmony rather than struggling with stress, anxiety and feelings of being overworked? This question is at the heart of the Lunar Calendar project.

When I feel a lack of harmony, I am drawn outdoors and to environments where nature’s processes set the rules. There I can easily engage with calmness, a sense of belonging, as well as structure and an organic flow of activities. Working within these rhythms gives me the energy and inspiration to work with art. Environmental conditions such as sunlight, moonlight, temperature, wind, rain, and available materials determine the possibilities and right mo-ments to the tasks and pursuits.

While collaborating with several artists and freelancers, I have noticed that I am not an exception when it comes to dealing with stress, insecurity, precarity, and struggling to maintain creative activity. Moving away from being “super busy” and working overtime led me to experiment with rhythms and influences from agriculture, such as taking care of chickens in my backyard that need to be cooped up when darkness shows and wake me up as soon as the sun rises. By creating more awareness of seasons and activities in nature and the cosmos I find a way to feel more grounded and organized.

The inspiration for the project arose from my experience working on a biodynamic farm in Northern California. Biodynamic farming is based on the lectures that Rudolf Steiner presented as the Agriculture Course in 1924, where he introduced the first organic way of farming by combining his anthroposophical values with existing methodologies and ancient knowledge. I feel inspired by an approach to agriculture that includes spiritual concerns toward the earth, animals, growing crops and the integration of cosmological forces. In this approach farmers also support their business venture in spirit, nourishing and reflective ways to literally account for all living things.

Biodynamic farmers manage the earth and their living resources not only to grow and produce but to be their naturally fertile and healthiest selves. Respecting and understanding nature and natural cycles has always been crucial in a farmer’s work; from the effect of small changes in temperature, humidity, wind, soil composition, to cosmological influences — remembering that the sun and moon are cosmological bodies. The biodynamic farmer understands that agriculture is at the base of every modern society, and takes the responsibility to produce while increasing the health and quality of living for the earth, plants, animals and humans.

Working from these ideas, I have adapted the format of the Biodynamic sowing and planting calendar that Maria Thun developed, building on the ideas of Rudolf Steiner. Calendars that consider cosmological cycles and moon phases have been applied in agriculture since the beginning of civilization to understand, predict and plan according to nature’s cycles and are still applied by farm- ers all over the world. Why separate culture from agriculture? Why divorce the modern calendar for organizing our busy agendas from natural and cosmological rhythms?

Reading Tom Hodgkinson and Masanobu Fukuoka’s ideas about agriculture and how to live by nature’s rhythms and seasonal activities as in preindustrial times inspired me to incorpo-rate ideas of idleness into my practice. These texts focus on opposing profitoriented cycles of hyperproductivity and offer instead a more sustainable way of combining work activities to the environmental and human rhythms. I hope you can find remnants of these teachers’ thinking in the calendar and also take inspiration to work less and enjoy more.

For me, a connection between farming and neuroscience emerged from the book Present Shock by American philosopher Douglas Rushkoff, who talks about structuring life according to lunar cycles as a way to deal with stress and burnout. For Rushkoff, connecting to lunar cycles is a way to get away from living by smartphone notifications and feeling constantly alarmed.

Using neurobiologist David Goodman's research, Rushkoff relates four phases to the production of four different types of neurotransmitters, relating these to differences in moods, qualities and abilities.

In the process of working with the moon I have become much more aware of her different phases and enjoy experimenting with the range of influences I experience. From using herbs and vegetables that relate to the body parts ruled by the currently visited constellation to relating the gradation of the moon to the phases of my work and projects.

Combining these sources, I have produced a calendar to aide in aligning the activities of cultural production with the rhythms and movements of nature and the cosmos -- a tool to support creative flow and structure daily artistic practice.

I would be very happy to receive any feedback and experiences you would like to share and that could help in the development of a full year calendar in the future.

—Marjolein van der Loo

New Moon Ritual

This ritual can be done whenever you find or make the time, but it is recommended to do it within three days after the new moon. Feel free to adjust the ritual to your liking. Allow about 45 minutes time and create some space for yourself. Use a big sheet of paper and some pens, markers, or other materials you like using.


Take a moment to feel gratitude for all that’s good in your life and for the people and situations that make you happiest. Write down 5-10 people or things that make you happy and feel grateful. Connect to them in your thoughts.


Be calm and take deep cleansing breaths for 1-2 minutes.


Decide on your top 10 intentions for this month and write them down. These can include intentions related to creative practice, work, health, relationships, and so on.


Read through the intentions and visualize them by drawing them, trying to see and experience how you feel when they come true.


Create an affirmation for every intention and write it down (e.g. “I am so excited about this exhibition” or “am so interested in this new research project”)


Give marks to the items on your list of intentions of how likely each is to come true on a scale of 0-100%.


Go through the list and imagine how these intentions can become tangible.


Meditate for 15 minutes.

Download Calendar

The Lunar Calendar for artistic practice was originally designed as an A1 poster, which is also available for download so you can print your own. A limited number of calendars are available; please contact .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) directly if you are interested.

Download PDF

Looking towards the FUTURE... a year long calendar

If you enjoyed the month long Lunar Calendar and would like to support the development of a year-long Lunar Calendar for artistic practice please contact .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Institutional support, financial support, editing support, design support, and printing support would all help make it possible.


Thank you:

Jonė Miskinytė, Rupert (staff, visiting tutors and participants of the Alternative Education Program), Matthew C. Wilson, Luc Ambagts (Vereniging Biologisch Dynamische Landbouw en Voeding), Egle Cesnakaviciute (Obelija), Charlie Cross ( ), Melinda Mills (Wildforest Sanctuary), Tamara Moana (maanyogi), Freek Lomme (Onomatopee), Jogintė Bučinskaitė (Nida Art Colony), Rasa Čirienė (Demeter, Lithuania), Sarah Chow, Artūras Raila, Stefan Cools, Ramune Balciunaite, and Mindaugas Jakubauskas.


Marjolein van der Loo .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

Jonė Miskinytė

Matthew C. Wilson

BACKGROUND IMAGE: Mattia Dantonio / Alamy Stock Photo

ZODIACS ILLUSTRATION: 16th century woodcut, public domain / Wikimedia Commons

The Lunar Calendar is part of the ongoing project, Almanac for an Artistic Practice, which started in the context of the 2018 Alternative Education program at Rupert in Vilnius, Lithuania.