Today, we lost a brilliant mind. You may have already heard that HR Giger, surrealist artist and designer of Ridley Scott’s Alien, died after a fall at the age of 74. I have long been a fan of his weird, wonderful sculpture (how great is Birth Machine, above?) and set designs, but I’m ashamed to admit today is the first time I ever saw his paintings. Actually, that’s not exactly accurate. I never missed an issue of Omni Magazine, and he was apparently a regular contributor. I just never realized it was the same guy.
It was his painting Necronom IV, that inspired the initial concept for the protagonist in the Alien series. Based on his book, “Necronomicon,” Ridley Scott brought Giger in to design the creature, which I think is one of the most memorable in the history of American horror and sci fi.
There’s actually a museum devoted to his work in Gruyères, Switzerland, which looks amazing. I’m adding it to my list of places I must visit at some point. (And anyway, it’s Switzerland. What’s not to love?)
Below is a link to part I of the the Alien making-of documentary on YouTube. (I think the link should take you to the whole series.)