RIP, H.R. Giger, 1940-2014
The famous Swiss surrealist leaves behind some of the twentieth century's most impressive and startling artwork. Here are our favorite biomechanical wonders.Swiss public TV was first to report that surrealist science fiction illustrator H.R. Giger has died at 74. Giger created the designs for the Alien movies, the notorious poster included with the Dead Kennedys' Frankenchrist, and many other iconic works.
Giger’s so-called biomechanoids represent a large share of his work. His representations of these creatures is a mixture of human and mechanical parts, with a strong focus on sexuality that can be disturbing for the viewer. These biomechanoids are to be seen in many of Giger’s paintings and drawings, but the theme is also common to his sculptures and furniture.From Taschen's bio:
Born in Chur, Switzerland, in 1940, he studied interior and industrial design for eight years at the School of Commercial Art in Zurich (1962-1970), but was soon gaining attention as an independent artist, with endeavors ranging from surrealistic dream landscapes created with a spray gun and stencils, to album cover designs for famous pop stars, and sculpture. In addition, Giger’s multi-faceted career includes designing two bars, located in Tokyo and Chur, as well as work on various film projects - his creation of the set design and title figure for Ridley Scott’s film Alien won him not only international fame but also an Oscar for Best Achievement for Visual Effects (1980).
The blog Letters of Note has a great piece of historical Giger-related correspondence by Alien director James Cameron worth revisiting today:
Considering the hugely positive reaction to his incredible, Oscar-winning work on the film's predecessor, it's little wonder that H. R. Giger was "disappointed" not to be contacted when production began on Aliens, the second installment in what is one of the most successful movie franchises in cinema's history. Indeed, Giger — the celebrated Swiss artist who most notably designed the beautifully horrific Alien itself in the late 1970s — vocalised his displeasure and, via his agent Leslie Barany, even wrote to the sequel's director, James Cameron. Three months later, Cameron explained his decision by way of the fascinating, remarkably honest letter seen below.
Photographer Brian Tomlinson creates beautiful stills of liquids dropped into an aquarium. Some of the results are below:
The intrepid counterculture archivists/publishers of Boo-Hooray have posted their “Top 100 Posters” for sale. What a stunning collection of avant-garde art and design. It makes me yearn for the downtown scenes of the prior century.
Wow! An edible drone with extruded vegetable spars that can be flown into famine-affected areas! Reworded press release posts popped up everywhere last week with this image attached. Ian Bogost wasn’t buying it.
Custom coffee vessels are the perfect piece of office flair, but it’s just a matter of time before your VOTE FOR PEDRO mug will start to lose its relevant wit. Why not have a new one every day, with whatever silly nonsense you want sticking off the sides? You can save big on your novelty […]
The Lightning port has thus far resisted the cruel fate that befell the headphone jack, and despite rumors that it may be disappearing come iPhone 8, for the present and foreseeable future, Lightning cables are a hot commodity for iPhone users. As such, we must make do in this strange time in which long, glorified […]
All the filters in the world won’t save your smartphone pics from a shaky hand. To really step up your mobile photography game, you’ll need some kind of mount to hold it steady. You could buy a smartphone attachment for a conventional camera tripod, but who wants to carry that kind of gear everywhere they […]