Sexual imagery? You're probably just imagining it.Hans Ruedi "H.R." Giger
(February 5, 1940-May 12, 2014) was a Swiss surrealist
painter and sculptor.
Known for this works' disquieting, biomechanical
, often sexual
has achieved much of his fame from his work in films as a set and creature designer. Among the film projects he's worked on are Alien
, Poltergeist II: The Other Side
, and Prometheus
, which actually dusted off some unused concepts from Alien
. Before this he provided two paintings for Emerson, Lake & Palmer
's album Brain Salad Surgery
, one of which had to be airbrushed for purposes of censorship. The Dead Kennedys
included a poster of his painting Penis Landscape
with their album Frankenchrist
— for which they got in a little trouble — and Danzig
used his art for the cover of Danzig III: How the Gods Kill
Giger also contributed art to the Dark Seed
games, has a number of bars in Switzerland themed after his art (which are probably nice
, comfortable places
to get a drink), and designs incredibly menacing furniture
Giger sadly passed away in May 2014 after sustaining injuries in a fall.
And his name's pronounced GHEE-ger
Common themes in Giger's work include:
- Author Phobia / Based on a Dream: He's known to have incorporated his nightmares into his creations. Apparently, he often worked through his sleeplessness.
- Body Horror: Tons of it.
- Diesel Punk: Giger's art gives the impression that he was raped by a diesel engine when he was a child.
- The engine part is debatable, but, speaking of childhood trauma, one of his birthday gifts was a genuine human skull. Presented by his father, a town's chemist, no less.
- Eternal Engine: Whenever he decides to do a "landscape."
- Evil Is Visceral: Much of his artwork is based on this, thus leading to many of the subtropes of this.
- Fan Disservice: Giger's artwork frequently features nudity and sexual situations, which tends to be more unsettling (or worse) than sensual (see Nightmare Fetishist below).
- Mad Artist: Those working with him invariably say that personally he's a very pleasant guy, but also note that he IS pretty weird.
- Nightmare Fetishist: He appears to be one, considering the sexual imagery common to his art and the fact that it was literally inspired by his night terrors. He even has a portfolio collection entitled Xenoerotica, which is exactly what is sounds like.
- Organic Technology: Much of his art portrays humans fused with machines, or humans boning machines, or humans that are fused with machines boning other humans fused with machines, etc. He even coined the term "biomechanical."
- Phallic Weapon: Inversion: Giger occasionally uses guns as a yonic metaphor. Google "Birth Machine" for an example.
- Surreal Horror