Tuesday, May 13, 2014
Remembering H.R. Giger
Most people know Giger from his work on creating the insanely terrifying xenomorph in the Aliens trilogy of films. He also did a huge amount of work on the doomed Dune adaptation that Alejandro Jodorowsky tried so hard to make during the 70s. Giger was also a hugely influential artist and sculpture. Despite having a difficult time working with Hollywood, he earned an Academy Award in Visual Effects for his startling, groundbreaking work on Ridley Scott's Alien.
Born in Switzerland, Giger suffered from intense night terrors all his life that heavily influenced his work. His style was something he dubbed "biomechanical", an alluring and upsetting mix of flesh and machines that became his hallmark. He used mostly airbrushing to work on canvas, effortlessly evoking scenes of horror with this difficult medium. His sculptures became the stuff of legend. As someone who was lucky enough to randomly see a xenomorph prototype in a random museum exhibit, I can tell you that it was beyond terrifying. The detail and work put
into just even the prototype was enough to rob any sane person of a night's sleep. It looks ready to leap up and tear you to pieces. His paintings are equally as visceral and you can almost feel the humid heat of an exhaust or hear the unnatural slither of alien creatures when you look at them. There are even H.R. Giger bars in Switzerland that he lent his style to that look like nightclubs from Hell.