‘Alien’ Artist H.R. Giger Dies at 74

hrgigerSwiss artist H.R. Giger, who designed the creature in Ridley Scott‘s sci-fi horror classic Alien, has died at age 74 from injuries suffered in a fall, his museum said Tuesday. More the story below.

Sandra Mivelaz, administrator of the H.R. Giger Museum in Gruyeres, western Switzerland, told the Associated Press that Giger died in a hospital on Monday. Giger’s works, often showing macabre scenes of humans and machines fused into hellish hybrids, influenced a generation of movie directors and inspired an enduring fashion for “biomechanical” tattoos.

Waking up to the news that H.R. Giger has passed away … changes everything.

Introduced to his visionary work in the early 1980′s, my first impression of his art was a distinct combination of compelling attraction … followed by a visceral instinct to recoil. His bio-mechanical aesthetic that blended the organic shapes of a human form with elements of hardware and xenomorphic signatures had the powerful effect of pulling the viewer in just as it was pushing them away. Attractive and repellant. And brilliant.

Giger’s brilliant design brings some of the same cache along with it in the 3-D form of a costume. Its sinuous lines, its glossy patina, its shocking symmetry and phallic undertones all combine to draw people forward… even while disconcerting elements within the work are suggesting ‘step back’. That’s powerful art. It’s a powerful costume to inhabit, as well.

And every costume art project I have attempted since the ‘Alien’ has been informed by Giger’s style, always striving to emulate Giger’s power to create that same ebb and flow. Draw them in, push them away. Danger couched in beauty. A perfect organism.

The man is gone. The art remains. The legacy is forever.

 

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BRIAN LANSANGAN

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