H.R. Giger 1940-2014

Swiss artist H.R. Giger has passed on at age 74. He is best known as the designer for the iconic xenomorph creature from the Alien franchise of films – many designs coming out out of the failed 1970s adaptation of Dune – for which he won the Visual Effects Academy Award. Prolific and instantly recognizable, his work fused biological and the industrial in a monochrome creepiness, Giger’s contribution to popular culture extended into album covers, sculpture and galleries paintings often depicting machinery, sexuality and violence, often all at the same time.

More at the NYTimes.

Kurt Halfyard
Resident culture snob.


  1. “And he was ahead of the cultural curve in ways that only true artists can be. His work anticipated the real-world blurring of the organic and the mechanical, the real and the virtual, that powered so much science fiction and so much horror over the last thirty years. The fact that horror and science fiction have become increasingly indistinguishable is partly due to Giger’s imagery, and designs that borrowed or outright stole from him.

    When people asked Giger to describe the creatures he envisioned in his paintings in the early 70s—humanoid or sometimes outright monstrous beings that seemed at once organic and metallic, and that merged with each other and with their environments—he called them “biomechanoids.” The word “biomechanical” has become commonplace in writing about both science fiction and science, but Giger, a disciple of Salvador Dali, was plumbing the notion long before the rest of the world caught on. ”



  2. Other than directors, its pretty rare that a behind the scenes worker gets acclaim for a film or series of films. In the case of Giger its well deserved.

    I don’t know how one does sci-fi concept art without consciously or subconsciously touching on Alien.


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