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R.I.P. H.R. Giger


The renowned Swiss artist H.R. Giger has died at the age of 74, as a result of injuries sustained in a fall.

As you probably know, Giger created the seminal designs of the classic 1979 film Alien, including that of the alien itself. Later, he would try to replicate that success in his design of the alien life form in the 1995 film Species, but he didn’t even come close. It just wound up looking kind of like the other alien but with dreadlocks and boobs. Perfect for the film itself, I suppose, which is all about men being scared of women and sex, but the creature design is nowhere near as iconic. I haven’t seen Prometheus, so I can’t judge, but I did see Jodorowski’s Dune, and I can tell you his design work for that film-that-never-was looked absolutely stunning.

But Giger was more than the movies he worked on. He was an artist first and foremost, and numerous Giger art calendars graced my walls in the past. His work was fascinating, a mix of the organic and mechanical, and often sexual in nature, sometimes overtly, sometimes in a more Georgia O’Keeffe kind of way. He painted album covers for the likes of Debbie Harry and Emerson, Lake & Palmer. He was so influential that Giger-themed bars opened around the world. (One was scheduled for New York City, but alas, it never came to fruition. If it had, I would be there daily.*)

Giger was a colossal talent. His death is a loss to the world of art, the world of science fiction, the world of music — hell, just the world in general. I’m sorry we won’t get to see any more of his beautiful and nightmarish “biomechanics,” but his impressive body of work remains for us and future generations to enjoy.



* I stand corrected! The NYC “Giger Room” did exist from 1998 to 2002 at the Limelight!

2 responses to “R.I.P. H.R. Giger”

  1. Kristine Schmidt says:

    Wonderful tribute. Thank you, Nick. <3

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