H.R. Giger, the Swiss painter best known for being a part of the special effects team that won an Academy Award for Best Achievement in Visual Effects for their design work on Alien (along with designing the classic monster itself) passed away yesterday at 74.
Giger’s work was fascinating, usually presenting something that was fantastical, but nightmarish in its relation to mankind. His creations struck a nerve, not just because of how elaborate they were, but how close they felt to us. There was a sense of torture to his drawings, though not necessarily a violent kind of torture. Giger’s depiction of torture was that of a species, our species, twisted in a parallel future vision, where man and machine had mixed into a new breed that was at the same time both organic and horrifying. Even the Xenomorph in Alien was vaguely humanoid and sleekly robotic, but entirely, well, alien. We could not connect with it on a level that we could consciously accept, but it was the alien’s drive to connect with us, to invade our bodies and give birth to something terrifying.
Even at his most surreal, Giger took us into a world where we saw the inhabitants and were forced to accept the fact that, shit, that could be us.
To celebrate his life,has created a gallery of some of H.R. Giger’s amazing work. We hope you enjoy it.