Mathilde Fachan is an astrologer, an author, an entrepreneur, a podcast host, and an incredible storyteller. Her passion for astrology was ignited by her aunt’s work in the field. That led Mathilde herself to pursue a creative career in the heart of Paris.
We sat down with her to learn more about her cosmic journey and to learn about her connections to art.
How did you become an astrologer?
I didn’t always want to be an astrologist, it’s not something you decide to be as a teenager. My aunt had always been interested in it. She had an entire career as a child psychologist and then went on to publish some amazing books and plays. When it came to astrology, she considered herself a researcher and she ended up writing several books on the subject. Growing up, I was surrounded by astrology books thanks to her.
I didn’t always want to be an astrologist, it’s not something you decide to be as a teenager.
Not wanting to make it my entire, I studied Political Science at Science Po. Then I tried out a career in PR and later as a Pastry Chef. Eventually, I opened Politicafé, a place for people to meet in Paris to have political discussions and debates. Due to the 2020 lockdown in France, those conversations to brought to a halt so I decided to convert Politicafé into something a bit different. Now it has been reopened (for deliveries only due to ongoing restrictions) as Café Contresort, which has a more witchy feeling to it.
Two years ago, I first started pursuing astrology when I launched my first podcast Z comme Zodiaque just for fun. It was a pleasant surprise to get such positive feedback on it! I was offered a book deal and I also decided to launch another podcast which will be about interviewing celebrities through reading their natal charts.
Through my work, I’m constantly reminded that astrology is not for the simple-minded. A lot of people dismiss it as frivolous, just manipulation, but it’s more about interpreting nuance. When I really started to study it, I quickly understood that it’s not enough to just know about astrology. A good understanding of its symbols takes into account history, science, politics, gender studies, and more. It’s impossible to interpret the sky if you’re not aware of what is happening in our world. Astrology is about opening doors for people from all walks of life.
What do you say to Astrology skeptics?
Astrology is not a science, it’s more akin to mythology in that it’s about storytelling. It’s a way for people to see themselves in a narrative. It’s not about telling the future either. It doesn’t take away your free will, rather, it’s about trying to interpret symbols in your life. It’s about nuance.
It’s about nuance.
Of course, when early astrologers wrote their interpretations it couldn’t be expected that it would reflect our lives today. It doesn’t capture the different experiences of being a man, being a woman, or being poor in today’s world. Astrology is not a science but it does capture something in our collective unconscious. It taps into things we are not sure how to explain but we know there’s something in the air.
Getting your chart read is a useful tool, I’m sure of that. But I encourage everyone to think for themselves and do some kind of introspective work. For some people that’s psychology and for others it’s astrology.
For some, it’s psychology and for others, it’s astrology. Of course, for a problem of psychological distress, one must absolutely turn to medical psychology. But for someone who simply wishes to better understand himself in all its facets, astrology offers a very rich tool for introspection!
Do you read people’s birth charts?
I offer natal chart readings for people. That consists of a session where I interpret what the sky looked like when someone was born. I go over the symbolism with them. It’s supposed to give insight into a person’s ego, emotion, and who they are. You can see their strengths and weaknesses throughout their lives. Additionally, I can look at the sky right now and interpret how that will impact someone’s chart.
I was reading someone’s chart once and saw that she would be having some tension with her mother. When we spoke about it she told me that her mother was aware of the zodiac and would use clichés to criticize her. She would say things like“you’re such a libra, you don’t have the strength to go through life.” Obviously, this was painful for this woman so I tried to empower her by showing her how she could find strength in her sign. A few weeks later, I heard that she was able to reconcile with her mother and I was so pleased for her.
Does art impact your work today?
Absolutely, I often use art to illustrate my work, especially that from the Renaissance because it uses so much from Greek and Roman mythology. I also use a lot of references from pop culture too because it bridges so many ideas for people.
What’s one artwork that you think everyone should know about?
One of my favorite paintings, it’s something everyone loves, is L’empire de Lumière by Magritte. It’s a little house surrounded by daylight but the house itself is cast in darkness. There’s something very nostalgic about it. The way he uses symbols is very intellectual and makes you think a lot.
There’s something scary in the piece. It reminds me of The Exorcist poster too. That makes me think of the Sunday night feeling – when you are dreading something coming up but nothing really happens. Fuyumi Soryo is a mangaka that I admire a lot, as well as my friend Alice Forge.
The art in the film Spirited Away by Hayao Miyazaki is also inspiring for me.
All of these works tie back to astrology because they play with symbols so much. They’re all about the viewer’s interpretation.
Would you say that what you do is an artform?
Yes, absolutely, it’s an art. It’s a craft at the same time, like witchcraft. I recently talked about it with my friend Eloïse, who is a Pastry Chef and can read palms. We were talking about the fact that astrology has become trendy in recent years and that many people want to study it. But then very soon people realize that learning astrology is like learning a new language. It requires a lot of work and mistakes, it is difficult to staymotivated. People who give up after a while don’t have enough fun with this astrological language. Sometimes, they may also lack facilities for practice. Above all it takes a lot of work, a particular approach or a specific talent can also make the difference. Like when you draw or paint!
Do you have a favorite artist?
I don’t think I have a favorite artist because I am always too curious. I’m also not a snob so some things that really get my attention are not the most perfect. Actually, I think my favorite kind of art is graphic novels. There are a lot of people that I admire who make graphic novels and Japanese Manga. I also have this really cliché thing, I went to Vienna in Austria and saw all the Art Nouveau. I thought it was so amazing, like a drug. It’s such a cliché but I don’t care, I think it’s amazing.
What is your dream project?
I always have a lot of ideas, but it’s the means that are the problem, especially during the pandemic. I never lack inspiration, just opportunities. With my colleague Marion Lagan, also an astrologer, we have launched another podcast where we interview people about their star charts. We also thought of offering C’est quoi ton signe in video format, to accompany the audio interview. That way people could see everyone’s reactions to having their natal charts read.
Actually, I would like to open a larger space, three floors dedicated to magic and witches. I would love to have a restaurant room, a bar, maybe a speakeasy, and also a room for palm readings! Because art is so important to me I would want this place to be covered in it to create a creative atmosphere. I’m always so inspired when I’m in these kinds of holistic spaces.
Do you have any tips for young creatives who are trying to get their start in 2021?
Well I know it’s so hard right now for a lot of people, and of course, the arts are always despised by authorities and governments. I know it’s a struggle and it’s easy to lose your courage, but at the same time, there is such a need for arts and entertainment right now. It’s more important than ever. Even if governments are not supporting us, it’s important to remember that we are essential and this is a vital time to stick to what you want to do. If you’re an artist please continue to do what you want to do. I think that there are a lot of opportunities on the horizon, good and bad but be alert for something new.
If you’re an artist please continue to do what you want to do.