Helmut Ruhemann was one of the best and best known art conservators and restorers of the early to mid 20th century, who exuded a highly exacting and painstaking attitude towards his profession.
He kept full documentation of his work, as well as photographic records which continue to highlight the methods underlying art conservation to this day.
It is perhaps not surprising to find Helmut was a sun Taurean, but he was also born at the exact time of the New Moon (his chart ruler) with Mercury in close attendance in his 11th house. Here we have the epitome of patience and endurance, but also an appreciation of art as Taurus is ruled by Venus.
His Venus (Sun ruler) is actually in impatient, fiery Aries in the 10th house of career, in good aspect to Mars in Gemini.
An ardent love of art brought down to earth
This would have given him that initial, strong, ardent love and appreciation of art, the need to communicate and disseminate his knowledge of it, and also seek to make this his career (10th house and Mars house ruler).
However, the strong Taurean elements would have grounded this energy in totally practical ways, and this earthy activity being in the 11th house, means that he invariably sought share this with others in the same field as himself, as a way to make a body of knowledge within his profession.
I think we can also see here his willingness to use modern means, x rays for instance, in the process of restoration but only as a way to give a truer, more conservative result, totally in keeping with the original creation where elements like brushstrokes were left unaffected.
One of his most famous restorations is that of early Netherlandish painter Rogier van der Weyden’s Saint Luke Drawing the Virgin, a task which totally suited his exacting approach.
Nervous energy and home/career challenges
His Mars is at the apex of a fairly tight T-square involving an angular Jupiter Saturn opposition in mutable signs and houses. There is a lot of nervous energy here.
Jupiter is conjunct the MC here too, and whilst this may be an indication of career success, it clearly was no easy ride to the top, this energy being harnessed and funnelled down to quite precise, deliberate artistic channels.
The fact that he decided to leave his homeland of Germany in 1933 was probably all bound up with this, that natal Saturn exactly conjunct his IC (home, family, origin) maybe always left him feeling a sense of overriding duty, even privation at home (wherever that might be), especially so with Jupiter opposing, offering wider opportunities in the outside world, which he eventually found in Great Britain.
copyright Leofwine Tanner 2019
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