H.R. Giger, Creator of Alien’s Iconic Monster, Has Died


Famed artist reportedly died from complications following a serious fall

Multiple news outlets (at the time of this writing, primarily in Switzerland) are reporting that famous Swiss artist H.R. Giger has passed away in hospital following a serious fall. He was 74.

A prolific painter, sculptor and set-designer whose surrealistic “biomechanical” style was said to be inspired by his experiences with a night-terrors sleep disorder; Giger gained international fame (and an Academy Award) for his design work on Ridley Scott’s original Alien, most famously his conception of main “Xenomorph” creature that would become one of the most iconic (and most imitated) monsters in cinema history.

The early paintings that put Giger on Hollywood’s radar appeared in his Necronomicon art books and in Omni Magazine. His first major motion-picture work would have been in Alejandro Jodorowsky’s version of Dune, but the project never came to fruition. After the success of Alien, his work was featured in many films of varying notoriety from the erotic horror/scifi hit Species to the low-budget Troma comedy Killer Condom to the Japanese manga-adaptation Tokyo: The Last Megalopolis. He also designed several popular lines of musical instruments and a franchise of “Giger Bars” in Switzerland.

Born in 1940, Hans Rudolf Giger was the son of a chemist who initially discouraged his interest in the arts. He studied Architecture and industrial design at Zurich’s School of Applied Arts in the 1960s before setting out to establish himself as a painter. He is survived by his wife, Carmen Maria Scheifele Giger, who is also the director of the H.R. Giger Museum in Gruyeres.

Sources: The Local, Swiss Info

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Bob Chipman
Bob Chipman is a critic and author.